Player Profile: Ratchanok Intanon (THA) 

Thailand’s Ratchanok Intanon is considered one of the game’s prodigies, and the star has not faded yet for the eight-ranked shuttler in the BWF World Rankings. 

Early achievements of Ratchanok Itanon 

The Bangkok resident justified that tag when she made her final on her maiden tournament (Laos Future Series) in 2008 at the age of 13, but success had to wait a year later when she won the Vietnam International Challenge, the first of her 19 career tour titles. 

From there, Intanon has been unstoppable by playing way beyond her years, in which she set numerous age records in major tournaments. She won three straight World Junior titles from 2009-11, with her first set another mark for the youngest-ever champion at the age of 14. 

First Thai female to become no.1 in women’s singles badminton 

However, their crowning glory for her came at the 2013 World Championships in Guangzhou, China. Eight years young, she became the youngest singles world champion as the fourth seed after outlasting home bet and then-Olympic Champion Li Xuerui in a marathon final. 

In April 2016 Intanon became Thailand’s first-ever singles player to become world number one on her three consecutive Superseries wins, holding it for two weeks. 

At just 27, she hopes for more success in team plays, in which she was a veteran of Thailand’s five Uber Cup squads and won three medals, including their runner-up finish at the 2018 edition at home.