Mathias Boe grew up dreaming of winning the YONEX All England Open and, despite taking home the men’s doubles title twice so far, the Dane is as hungry as ever to win a third.
Runners up last year, Boe returns to Birmingham with doubles partner Carsten Mogensen next week. But the Danish duo will have just one more shot at the title together after it was announced they will be paired with new partners after this years' Championships.
Mads Conrad returns to play with Boe whilst Mads Kolding will join Mogensen as a new pair.
Now 38-years-old, Boe will clearly have romantic hopes of matching that of his compatriot Tine Baun, who in 2013, netted an All England title on her Championships swansong.
2019 is unlikely to be a goodbye for either player - they will return as new duos - but a title together in their last performance as a pair would certainly be as romantic an end to their joint love affair with the Championships as that of Baun six years ago.
“The All England is our favourite tournament and we are really excited and looking forward to coming to Birmingham,” said Boe, victorious in both 2011 and 2015.
“Even though we’ve played there so many times, it’s still a super thrilling excitement you have to come there.
“I’m really happy that I’ve been good and lucky enough to win it twice, but to win it three times would be a dream come true. As a child, you always watched the All England; it is a big thing.
“Next to the World Championships and the Olympics, it’s the tournament that I want to win the most.”
In previous visits,Boe and Mogensen have reached six YONEX All England Open semi-finals, winning the tournament twice and finishing as runners-up in 2010 and 2018.
That is experience Boe certainly values but when it comes to setting the Danish duo apart, the veteran knows it is more than what has gone before that defines a star.
“I don’t know if it helps us,” he added. “It can keep you a bit calm, but at the same time it can make you lazy and too relaxed, so it depends on how mentally prepared you are for the event.
"We are not young anymore, but we are still really hungry and every time we play a tournament we want to win it and are aiming to win it. It’s no different this year at the All England.”
“I think all badminton players really want to win the event. Everybody feels that it is one of the highlights of the season.”