Badminton is big business in Copenhagen, Denmark as the BWF World Championships are set to begin there on August 25.
This is the fourth time Denmark has hosted the most prestigious event in the sport, and this year's tournament is expected to be an excellent showcase of elite skills.
The Ballerup Super Arena is the venue, and because of the 9,200-seat capacity, there should be an intimate and festive environment as the top teams and players compete for the championship.
The tournament culminates on August 31. It will feature men's and women's singles and doubles play, as well as mixed doubles.
Click here to see the draw, schedule, players and teams in action.
Chong Wei Lee
The top-seeded man in the draw is Malaysian Chong Wei Lee. The 31-year-old is a two-time Olympic silver medalist. He's also won four of the six tournaments he's competed in this year.
Just prior to the beginning of the World Championships, Lee found out that he would be reunited with his coach Rashid Sidek.
The latter had been sidelined by the Badminton Association of Malaysia because of a poor showing at the Commonwealth Games. At one point, Sidek pondered leaving the team all together.
Cooler heads have prevailed and Sidek is now the man in charge of Malaysia badminton again. Per DNA India, Sidek said this about his return to the team on Tuesday.
"I was told of my inclusion today. I am happy that I get to help the players at the World Championships."
Now that he has been reunited with Lee, the chemistry the two enjoyed during the world No. 1's most successful runs should allow him to reaffirm his status as the best badminton player in the world.
It will be hard to defeat a focused and happy Lee in Denmark. Per the Malay Mail Online: "If Lee plays to form, he should have little trouble until a potential clash with either Denmark’s Jan O'Jorgensen or Santoso in the semi-finals."
Simon Santoso and O'Jorgensen may be the only players capable of knocking Lee off.
On the women's side, China's Xuerui Li is the one to beat. The 23-year-old has already won the Indonesia, Malaysia and Japan Open this year. She's also the 2012 Olympic gold medalist in the sport.
With her resume, there's no doubt she'll be the one everyone is eyeing for the championship in Denmark on the ladies' side.
Li is expected to waltz into the finals and even has a first-round bye. Don't expect her to be over-confident. Despite being regarded as the world's best female badminton player since 2012, Li fell in the championship match of the event last year.
She'll be focused and determined not to have history repeat itself this year.
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