Photo credit: Badmintonthaitoday.com

The countdown to Guangzhou has started. All the eight best of the year in each category is in China to compete in the HBSC BWF World Tour Finals 2018. Here is a presentation of the players in the mixed double category.

1. Zheng Siwei/Huang Yaqiong, China

Top of the world. That is how you can present Zheng Siwei and Huang Yaqiong, the two Chinese who have won everything this year – almost. The Chinese duo has been very dominant throughout 2018 where they only missed the final in three of the 14 finals they played. They won nine of 11 finals, including the World Championships and the Asian Games. This places them on a very solid first place on the HSBC Race to Guangzhou Ranking as well as the BWF World Ranking where they have the highest amount of points of anyone at the moment; 108,600. Fun facts: Four of the finals were against compatriots Wang Yilyu and Huang Dongping; in all of these one of the games finished 21-19 to Zheng Siwei and Huang Yaqiong.

Results from finals in 2018:

Malaysia Masters: Tang Chun Man/Tse Ying Suet, Hong Kong vs. Zheng/Huang, China 19-21 22-20 21-18
Indonesia Masters: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir, Indonesia 21-14 21-11
All England: Yuta Watanabe/Arisa Higashino, Japan vs. Zheng/Huang, China 15-21 22-20 21-16
Malaysia Open: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Wang Yilyu/Huang Dongping, China 21-19 21-18
World Championships: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Wang Yilyu/Huang Dongping, China 21-17 21-19
Asian Games: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Tang Chun Man/Tse Ying Suet, Hong Kong 21-8 21-15
Japan Open: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Wang Yilyu/Huang Dongping, China 21-19 21-8
Victor China Open: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Zhang Nan/Li Yinhui, China 21-16 21-9
Denmark Open: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Dechapol Puavaranukroh/Sapsiree Taerattanachai, Thailand 21-16 21-13
French Open: Zheng/Huang, China vs. Seo Seung Jae/Chae Yu Jung, Korea 21-19 21-14
Fuzhou China Open: Zheng/Huang, Chinavs. Wang Yilyu/Huang Dongping, China 21-15 11-21 21-19

2. Yuta Watanabe/Arisa Higashino, Japan

Ranked second on the HSBC Race to Guangzhou Ranking and third on the BWF World Ranking, Yuta Watanabe and Arisa Higashino have taken the world by storm. They brought out a big surprise when they won the All England back in March but after that they have not been able to maintain the same high level of play. This does not destroy anything for the two Japanese who are still in the top of the world ranking. Apart from one more title at their last tournament before the season finals, Watanabe and Higashino reached four semifinals and four quarterfinals during the year. Fun fact: Yuta Watanabe is the only player to have qualified for the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals 2018.

Results from finals in 2018:

AllEngland: Watanabe/Higashino, Japan vs. Zheng Siwei/Huang Yaqiong, China 15-21 22-20 21-16
Hong Kong Open: Watanabe/Higashino, Japan vs. Wang Yilyu/Huang Dongping, China 21-18 21-14

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