# Indonesia to defend men’s title
# China to defend women’s title
# Semi-finalists in both categories will qualify for Thomas & Uber Cup Finals
This year’s Badminton Asia Men’s and Women’s Team Championships in Alor Star has a title sponsor and will be known as “E-Plus Badminton Asia Team Championships 2018”.
In October last year Badminton Asia signed a partnership with South East Asia’s leading management agency E-Plus Global Sdn Bhd as a strategic partner in promoting, organizing and developing Badminton Asia’s event in this region.
The championships will be held at the Sultan Abdul Halim Stadium in Alor Setar, Kedah from Feb 6-11. 
Fifteen teams, including defending champions Indonesia, will compete in the men’s category and 13, including defending champions China, have confirmed their participation in the women’s category.
The other men’s teams are China, Hong Kong China, India, Japan, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Chinese Taipei. 
Vietnam will compete only in the women’s team event while Kazakhstan, Myanmar and Nepal will not have a team in the women’s category.
The E-Plus Badminton Asia Team Championships is drawing a lot of interest as it also serves as Continental Asia’s qualifying round for the Thomas Cup and Uber Cup Finals.
The top four (semi-finalists) from the E-Plus Badminton Asia Team Championships in both the men’s and women’s categories will qualify for the Thomas Cup and Uber Cup Finals to be held in Bangkok from May 20-27 at the Impact Arena.
The Asian Championships will be decided on three singles and two doubles in both the men’s and women’s categories.
The group stage will be decided on round robin format from Feb 6-8 with the top two teams from each group qualifying for knockout stage for the quarter-finals. The knockout stage will begin on Feb 9. The semi-finals will be played on Feb 10 and the finals on Feb 11.
Badminton Asia’s Chief Executive Officer Mr Kenny Goh reminded the teams that the dateline for entries by Players Name (online) is Jan 16 2018.
Indonesia won the men’s title at the last championships held in Hyderabad, India with are hard fought 3-2 win over Japan in the final. In the semi-finals Japan beat South Korea 3-0 while Indonesia defeated India 3-1.
Badminton powerhouse China won the women’s title, defeating Japan 3-2 in the final. In the semi-finals China beat Korea 3-0 while Japan defeated Thailand also by a 3-0 margin. – BADMINTON ASIA
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