The Best of Asia: Wang ZhiYi
Wang ZhiYi is a Chinese player currently ranked #17 in BWF’s ranking for Women’s Singles. Despite only being 21 years old, she already has 116 career wins in women’s singles and doubles event. She is already on her way to becoming one of Asia’s best players!
Wang is from Hubei province, and comes from a family that doesn’t have any background in sports. She started playing badminton as a way to remain healthy, and it’s when other people saw her potential she started pursuing a professional career in badminton.
In 2017, very early on in her career, she’s already made an impression on the badminton scene. At the World Junior Championships in Yogyakarta, she helped the mixed team earn a gold medal. She then went onto the senior level, and this is what she had to say: “Things were good for me at the junior level. Moving on to the senior level, it’s tougher and I’m feeling the pressure and I need to work hard. I’m still not well-known, but I’m trying to achieve that.”
She won one of her first singles medal at the CHINA INTERNATIONAL CHALLENGE 2017 where she won silver, only losing to compatriot Cai Yan Yan in the finals. But despite the defeat, she went on to clinch a gold medal at the YONEX KOREA JUNIOR BADMINTON CHAMPIONSHIPS after defeating Wei Ya Xin 21-12, 21-12 in just over 30 minutes.
2018 saw even greater success for Wang. At the beginning of the year, she already clinched a gold medal at the YONEX DUTCH JUNIOR 2018 against Chinese player Wei Ya Xin in under 30 minutes. Not long after she also won gold at the PEMBANGUNAN JAYA RAYA JUNIOR GRAND PRIX 2018 and MALAYSIA INTERNATIONAL CHALLENGE. She continued her winning streak by lifting the MALAYSIA INTERNATIONAL CHALLENGE trophy and Banthongyord Junior International. It was back to back to back gold medals for the young player!
She was also victorious at the BADMINTON ASIA JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIPS 2018 (INDIVIDUAL EVENT) and the Asian Junior Championships. Another amazing feat that she did was winning silver at the Youth Olympic Games, winning against Malaysian player Got Jin Wei.
Wang soared even higher the following year, winning multiple gold medals at the U.S. Open, Indonesia Masters, Dutch Open, Austrian Open, Belarus International, and Malaysia International.
When asked about her experience in playing in big tournaments, Wang says “I’m looking forward to playing with all these top players. It doesn’t matter if I win or lose. I just want to give my best when I’m on court”. We’re so excited to see her continue to grow this year and the following years!