After soccer, badminton is the most popular sport in the world and also the first racquet sport in the world. It is a major event in the Olympics. Badminton has been dominated by Asian countries like China, Malaysia, Japan, Indonesia and latecomer countries like India, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong and Thailand over the years.
Badminton is a fun and spontaneous sport that focuses on the overall development of the player - physical, mental and social. This sport requires the player to be light-footed, neat and meticulous in their techniques. They also need to have strength and muscle power to go with quick reflexes to make it to the top.
Below-mentioned are some of the best badminton players in the world who rose to the top with their perfect technique and love for the sport-
Hailing from China, Lin Dan is considered one of the best badminton players in the world. Fondly regarded as ‘Super Dan’ by his fans, he became the only badminton player to complete the “Super Grand Slam” by the age of 28. Lin Dan achieved that status by winning all major titles in international badminton. A world-famous badminton player, he achieved five gold and two silver medals in World Badminton Championships and 2 gold medals in Badminton World Cup. Lin Dan also became the only player to bag the Olympic gold twice consecutively in the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics. He is one of the most famous badminton players and was titled the best male athlete of 2010 by CCTV Sports.
Lee Chong Wei
Lee Chong Wei is a world-famous badminton player from Malaysia. He ranked first worldwide from August 2008 to June 2012 and holds the record of being the only Malaysian shuttler to rank first worldwide for more than a year. Talking about his Olympics achievements, Lee Chong Wei won three silver medals and is the sixth player to win an Olympic medal from Malaysia. While growing up, he idolised and drew inspiration from Sun Jun of China, a former world champion and one of the most famous badminton players. Lee Chong Wei is considered one of the best badminton players in the world Malaysia has ever produced by the badminton fraternity.
Born in Denmark, the 27-year-old Viktor Axelsen is one of the most famous badminton players. At a very young age, he has achieved great feats in the sport of badminton. He became the first-ever European world Junior champion in 2010, beating Korea's Kang Ji-Wook. A world-famous badminton player, Viktor Axelsen was the 2017 World Champion and the bronze medalist at the 2016 Summer Olympics. He was also crowned European men's singles champion in 2016 and 2018. Looking at his achievements and dedication to the game, it can be surely said that Viktor Axelsen is not far away from becoming one of the best badminton players in the world.
Fondly called ‘Junior Lin Dan’ or ‘Little Dan’, Chen Long is one of the best badminton players in the world, hailing from China. He is the current Olympic Champion, two-time World Champion and an Asian Champion. Chen Long was a former World no. 1, occupied the top men's singles ranking for 76 consecutive weeks from December 2014 to June 2016. A world-famous badminton player, he started his achievements on the international front by bagging the boys' singles title in the Asian and World Junior Championships in 2007. Later, in 2009, Chen Long won his first professional tournament in the Philippines Open. He has always followed two of the most famous badminton players, Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan, and always aspired to be like them.
Taufik Hidayat is a retired world-famous badminton player who achieved the Indonesian Open six times in his career. He is a former World and Olympic champion in the men's singles. Taufik Hidayat and Lin Dan had an open rivalry to achieve the top spot in the badminton world. Until his retirement, he achieved a total of 27 international titles. One of the most famous badminton players, Taufik Hidayat’s shot-making strengths were his backhand, forehand jump smash, drop shot, smooth footwork and deceiving netplay. His forehand jump smash in the 2006 World Championships was once the fastest smash recorded in singles competition. With gold, silver, two bronze medals in World Championships and many more medals under his belt, Taufik Hidayat can be rightly considered one of the best badminton players in the world.
Well-known for her forecourt mastery, uniformity and anticipation, Gao Ling is a retired and one of the most famous badminton players. The badminton fraternity still considers the ever-smiling badminton player as the most successful doubles player in history. She, with her partner, Huang Sui, won six consecutive women’s doubles titles from 2001 to 2006 at the All-England Championships. A world-famous badminton player, Gao Ling achieved two gold, silver and bronze medals in the 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games. She also bagged four gold medals in the Badminton World Championship. One of the best badminton players in the world, Gao Ling has won titles at almost every top tier tournament in the world.
Tony Gunawan is a former world-famous badminton player who played for Indonesia and
America. He played for his homeland Indonesia from 1992 to 2001 and now coaches the United States team. One of the best badminton players in the world, Tony Gunawan bagged the 2000 Sydney Olympic gold medal, 2001 Seville World Championships and Anaheim 2005 World Championships with 3 different men’s doubles partners. He also established the titles of US Open, Taipei Open, Puerto Rico Open and SCBA Classic in mixed doubles. With so many achievements in badminton throughout his career, Tony Gunawan can be rightly considered one of the most famous badminton players.