This slight change in regulations differs from the London Olympics, where three singles players from an NOC could qualify if they were in the top four of the world rankings. For the Rio Olympics, the maximum quota for singles players from the same NOC will be two places if both players are ranked in the world’s top 16.
This is similar to the quota for doubles in which there is a maximum of two pairs per NOC if both pairs are ranked in the top eight.
The decision was made by the Badminton World Federation’s (BWF) Council while establishing qualification requirements for the Rio Olympics. Badminton World Federation (BWF) sees this as a greater opportunity for players from more NOCs to compete at the highest level.
The total quota per NOC will therefore be reduced from 18 to 16 (eight male and eight female players).
The other major change for the Rio Olympics is that the host country’s quota will be one player in each of the two singles categories only. The host will not be given a quota in doubles.
Most of the other criteria for Olympic qualification have been retained. The total quota for badminton is 172 places, of which six (three male and three female players) are reserved for Tripartite Commission Invitation Places; two (one male and one female singles player) reserved for the host country and the remaining 164 (82 male and 82 female players) are qualifiers/continental representatives based on world rankings.
The number of individual quota places in singles, including continental representation places (but excluding the quota for Tripartite Commission invitation and host country), is 34 for men and 34 for women. Added places may become available in singles if any players qualify in two events.
In doubles, the 16 highest-ranked pairs in each event will make the cut, taking into account the continental representatives.
The rankings of 5 May, 2016, will be used to determine the Olympic qualifiers in each of the five categories, from the ranking points accumulated in the period between 4 May 2015 and 1 May 2016. Participation in the following events will count: Thomas & Uber Cup; Sudirman Cup, World Championships; Superseries; Grand Prix Gold; Grand Prix; International Challenge; International Series; Future Series; Continental Championships (Individual and Team); any other international event sanctioned by BWF and with BWF approval as being part of the world ranking lists.
For further details: QUALIFICATION SYSTEM – GAMES OF THE XXXI OLYMPIAD – RIO 2016