Akane Yamaguchi (born 6 June 1997) is a Japanese badminton player who is a singles specialist and a member of the Kumamoto Saishunkan Badminton team. Yamaguchi occupied the number-one position in the BWF women's singles ranking on 19 April 2018, becoming the first Japanese player to achieve that distinction.
At the age of 16 years and 3 months, Yamaguchi became the youngest-ever player to win the BWF Super Series tournament, beating Shizuka Uchida in the final of 2013 Japan Super Series. This was the first time a Japanese woman won the home event in the ladies' singles at the Japan Open and first victory for Japan in the Japan Open.
On her way to victory in Denmark, Yamaguchi won against twice-world-champion and Olympic gold medallist Carolina Marin in a close, three-set match and her teammate Nozomi Okuhara, whom she had never beaten prior to the Olympic Games.
On 19 April 2018, Yamaguchi became the first Japanese person to become the top-ranked singles player in the world.
The BWF World Tour, which was announced on 19 March 2017 and implemented in 2018, is a series of elite badminton tournaments sanctioned by Badminton World Federation (BWF). The BWF World Tours are divided into levels World Tour Finals, Super 1000, Super 750, Super 500, Super 300 (part of the HSBC World Tour), and the BWF Tour Super 100.
The BWF Superseries, which was launched on 14 December 2006 and implemented in 2007, is a series of elite badminton tournaments, sanctioned by Badminton World Federation (BWF). BWF Superseries levels are Superseries and Superseries Premier. A season of Superseries consists of twelve tournaments around the world that have been introduced since 2011. Successful players are invited to the Superseries Finals, which are held at the end of each year.