Lin Dan retires: Here's a look at badminton legend's five epic matches
Lin Dan's retirement marks the end of his two-decade-long storied career. He is also known as 'Super Dan' and is considered to be one of the greatest badminton players in history.
Ace badminton player Lin Dan announced his retirement from the sport on 4 July. The 37-year-old legend decided to say goodbye to the sport citing his deteriorating physical fitness.
Lin Dan has won the Olympics singles titles twice—Beijing 2008 and 2012 London Games. The player has also won all the nine major titles in the sport, including five world championship gold medals.
Lin Dan's retirement marks the end of his two-decade-long storied career. Famously known as"Super Dan" across the world, the Chinese shuttler is considered to be one of the greatest badminton players in history.
Dan’s great rival during his career was Malaysian Lee Chong Wei. Of the 40 matches that they played against each other, Dan has the upper hand with 28 wins.
Here’s a look at five of his epic matches.
Dan becomes Olympic champion in 2008
Lin Dan became an Olympic champion after he trounced Lee Chong Wei in the 2008 Olympics. The games saw China finish their campaign with three golds in badminton. Lin Dan allowed Chong Wei only 12 points in the first game and eight in the second as he wrapped up the match and gold medal No 3 for China in 41 minutes.
2012 Olympics final against Lee Chong Wei
In the final of the London 2012 men's singles badminton final, China's Lin Dan successfully defended his Olympic crown with a victory over arch-rival Lee Chong Wei. He dug deep in a compelling third game to win 15-21, 21-10, 21-19.
First All-England title
A then 20-year-old Lin Dan made had a massive 2004. He came up against Denmark’s Peter Gade in the All-England finals that year. Gade was in top form and Lin Dan found it hard in the first game but the Chinese was back to his best in the second game. The third game also went to Lin Dan and he topped the men’s badminton rankings that year.
Dan loses against Lee in 2016
Lee Chong Wei beat Lin Dan 15-21, 21-11, 22-20 to book a place in the final during the 2016 Olympics. While Lin Dan got off the blocks fast and led throughout the first game. His momentum was thwarted in the second game, allowing Lee to take a 11-2 lead after several mistakes. The Malaysian eventually took the game 21-11. Down 17-20, Dan saved three match points. However, he could not save a fourth and as a result, he lost the match.
Badminton World Championship 2011
While many expected the Badminton World Championship 2011 men's singles final to be a classic Lee Chong Wei – Lin Dan match, it wasn’t that tight a contest. Lin Dan managed to secure his fourth world championship title after beating Lee Chong Wei 22-20, 21-14, 23-21. The Malaysian started strong and won the first game, but his hopes were crushed in the last two games.
Top seed Sindhu, a former world champion, took 36 minutes to get the better of 21-year-old Chaliha 21-7 21-18 and set up a last-four clash with Thailand's Supanida Katethong, seeded sixth.
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