Which tournaments in badminton are most famous?
Badminton is a globally acclaimed sport which is immensely popular in Asia-Pacific and parts of Europe. The governing body of the sport at a global level is the Badminton World Federation (BWF). The BWF categorises the global tournaments into Grade 1, Grade 2 and Grade 3 categories.
This is the highest tier of badminton tournaments. It features seven major international tournaments and two events for para-athletes. Most of them are team events that feature the disciplines of singles, doubles and mixed doubles. The nine tournaments are: World Championships, Thomas Cup, Uber Cup, Sudirman Cup, Olympics, World Junior Championships, World Senior Championships, Para-badminton World Championships and Paralympics.
This category is divided into six levels, with each level offering different ranking points and prize money. The highest is Level 1 and the lowest is Level 6. Players earn individual points or as a doubles team through these tournaments to feature themselves in the world rankings. The six tiers are:
- Level 1: BWF World Tour Finals
- Level 2: BWF World Tour Super 1000
- Level 3: BWF World Tour Super 750
- Level 4: BWF World Tour Super 500
- Level 5: BWF World Tour Super 300
- Level 6: BWF Tour Super 100
Just like in tennis, the BWF World Tour Finals are the year-ending championships contested between the top eight players (based on rankings) of that particular season.
This is the lowest tier of events featuring tournaments held at a continental or regional levels. These are called the International Challenge, International Series and Future Series.
The Grade 1 events focus on national representations whereas the Grade 2 and Grade 3 events focus on individual players’ career progression.