China cancel home Opens but will host Tour Finals

BWF secretary general Thomas Lund

PETALING JAYA: China will only host one of three badminton tournaments scheduled.

The Badminton World Federation (BWF) confirmed that China will host their first international badminton tournament since 2019 with the flagship World Tour Finals in Guangzhou from Dec 14-18 but have scrapped the home legs in Changzhou and Fuzhou.

The Finals offers the biggest prize money in badminton - US$1.5 million (RM 6.95 million). Top eight players and pairs in each category will compete at the season-ending finale in the Tianhe Stadium.

BWF secretary general Thomas Lund said it was a positive step for the sport to see elite level badminton in China once again.

"The Finals is one of our most lucrative tournaments of the year and we’re excited to bring the Finals back to Guangzhou," said Lund.

"We also thank the government of China for extending its invitation to the world’s top badminton players and we remain confident that our hosts will deliver a spectacular event with the highest standard of player safety and comfort.

"Guangzhou has staged two spectacular editions of the Finals in 2018 and 2019 and we look forward to putting on another grand show for our loyal fans in China."

With the China Open (Nov 29-Dec 4) and Fuzhou China Open (Nov 6-11) dropped, players will be scrambling to do well in the upcoming Europe legs in Denmark, France and Germany to book their tickets for the Finals.

Said Lund: "Unfortunately, it was not possible to move forward with plans to stage the two tournaments in Changzhou and Fuzhou."

“It’s been a vital year for badminton and we’re extremely proud we have been able to deliver a majority of our Tour stops.

"The focus now turns to the remaining tournaments with big points on offer over the coming weeks."

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