Lin Dan

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For the late Ming/early Qing Mongolian khan, see Ligdan Khan.
Lin Dan
Lin Dan.jpg
Lin at Golden Bauhinia Square, Hong Kong, 2008
Personal information
Nickname(s) Super Dan
Born (1983-10-14) October 14, 1983 (age 30)
Longyan, Fujian, China
Height 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
Weight 70 kg (150 lb; 11 st)
Handedness Left
Men's singles
Career title(s) 56
Highest ranking 1 (February 2004)
Current ranking 15 (September 30, 2014)
BWF profile
Updated on 14:39, 23 October 2013 (UTC).
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Lin (林).
Lin Dan
Chinese 林丹

Lin Dan (born October 14, 1983 in Longyan, Fujian[1]) is a professional badminton player from China. He is a two-time Olympic champion, five-time world champion, and five-time All England champion. Considered by many to be the greatest singles player of all time,[2][3][4] by the age of 28 Lin had completed the "Super Grand Slam", having won all nine major titles in the badminton world: Olympic Games, World Championships, World Cup, Thomas Cup, Sudirman Cup, Super Series Masters Finals, All England Open, Asian Games, and Asian Championships, becoming the first and only player to achieve this feat.[5][6]

Lin Dan also became the first men's singles player to retain the Olympic gold medal by winning in 2008 and defending his title in 2012.[7]

He has been nicknamed "Super Dan" by his fans.[8]

Personal life[edit]

In his early years, Lin was encouraged to learn to play the piano by his parents, but chose to play badminton at the age of five. He joined the sports troop of the People's Liberation Army at the age of 13 and has been part of China's national badminton team since 2001 when he was 18.[9][10][11]

On April 10, 2008, he created controversy when he struck coach Ji Xinpeng in front of his teammates and reporters during the warm-up tournament ahead of the Thomas Cup. The incident was reportedly triggered by Lin being unhappy with Ji's starting lineup for the tournament.[12]

Lin has been in a romantic relationship with Xie Xingfang, herself a former world champion badminton player, since 2003.[13] They were quietly engaged on December 13, 2010 in Haizhu, Guangzhou. Xie initially denied but later acknowledged her relationship with Lin. Lin reacted angrily towards the news and insisted that it was a personal matter between him and Xie.[14] They married on September 23, 2012 and held the wedding ceremony at the Beijing University of Technology.[15]

Lin has five tattoos that were visible during the 2012 Summer Olympics. His left upper arm has a Christian cross, representing his love for his Christian grandmother.[16] Five stars on his lower arm signify the Grand Slam he has won. The tattoo on his right upper arm is the text 'until the end of the world' which is the English name of a song '世界が終るまでは…' by Wands, which came from his favourite anime Slam Dunk.[17] The double 'F' lettering on the right lower arm stands for 'Fang Fang', nickname of his wife Xie Xingfang. His initials 'LD' are tattoed on the back of his neck.[18] However, these tattoos have sparked controversy due to his military and religious status.[16][19]

On October 17, 2012, he became the first active Chinese badminton player to accept a master's degree, which was presented at Huaqiao University.[20]

Career[edit]

Junior events[edit]

Lin emerged as a winner in the 2000 Asian Junior Championships in both the team and boys' singles events. He was also a member of the winning Chinese team and a boys' singles semi-finalist in the 2000 World Junior Championships.[21]

2001–2003[edit]

2001 marked the start of Lin's professional career. In his first final, at the Asian Badminton Championships, he was thrashed by compatriot Xia Xuanze.[22]

In 2002 Lin took his first title at the Korea Open.[23] He was a member of China's 2002 Thomas Cup squad which defeated Sweden (5–0),[24] Denmark (3–2),[25] and Korea (4–1) to reach the semifinals.[26] However, Lin didn't play in the semifinal tie against Malaysia, which saw China's team tumble to a 1–3 defeat.[27] Lin participated in another four tournaments without coming close to victory. He was knocked out in the first round of the Singapore,[28] and Indonesia Opens,[29] second round of the Denmark Open,[30] and third round of the China Open.[31] In October Lin was defeated in the semifinals of the Asian Games team competition which directly blew China's hope of a gold medal.[32]

Lin started the 2003 season with a third round defeat in the All England Open.[33] He reached a final later in the year at the Japan Open but was beaten by his compatriot Xia Xuanze once again.[34] Lin then made his inaugural debut in the World Championships in Birmingham, England. He breezed past Per-Henrik Croona and Przemysław Wacha in the first two rounds, but was beaten by Xia again in his third round match.[35] After the world meet, he was eliminated in the semifinals of the Singapore Open,[36] third round of the Indonesia Open,[37] and second round of the Malaysia Open.[38] However, Lin ended the season strongly by capturing the Denmark,[39] Hong Kong,[40] and China Opens,[41] and finishing runner-up at the German Open.

2004[edit]

Lin had a good start to 2004, earning the BWF's number one world ranking for the first time in February. He helped China win the qualifying round of Thomas Cup and then captured the Swiss Open.[42][43] He won his first ever All England Open title by beating Peter Gade in the final.[44] He reached the semifinal of the Japan Open before going off to Jakarta, Indonesia in May for the Thomas Cup campaign.[45]

In Thomas Cup, Lin helped China to an excellent start in which they thrashed United States and defending champion Indonesia 5–0 respectively to enter the quarterfinals.[46] Lin then cruised past Shoji Sato and Lee Hyun-il in quarterfinal and semifinal ties against Japan and Korea respectively, each ending in 3–0 wins for China.[47][48] In the final, he beat Peter Gade in straight games to give China the lead before the Chinese team eventually won three matches to one. China thus took the crown, ending a 14 years drought in the tournament.[49]

Lin suffered setbacks later in the 2004 season when he was ousted in the quarterfinals of the Malaysia Open,[50] and was reported to have a leg injury in mid-July, prior to the Olympic Games.[51] Lin "crashed" in his first Olympic Games when, as the first seed, he was ousted early by Singapore's Ronald Susilo, who claimed Lin was "too eager to win".[52][53] However, Lin bounced back with three titles at the Denmark,[54] German,[55] and China Opens,[56] and ended the season as a semi-finalist at the Indonesia Open.[57]

2005[edit]

Lin retained his number one world ranking during 2005, winning his second German and Hong Kong Open titles, as well as the Japan Open, China Masters, and World Cup tournaments.[58][59][60][61][62] He also helped China recapture the Sudirman Cup when it shut-out both defending champion South Korea in the semifinals and Indonesia in the final.[63][64]

Lin failed to retain his All England title, losing a three set final to teammate Chen Hong,[65] and he was beaten in the final of the Malaysia Open by another rising star, Lee Chong Wei.[66] In his bid to capture his first world title at Anaheim California, he beat Kennevic Asuncion, Shoji Sato, Lee Hyun-il, and Peter Gade in succession to reach the final.[67][68][69] There he was decisively beaten by Taufik Hidayat.[70] Lin was also eliminated in the semifinals of the Singapore Open and the quarterfinals of the China Open.[71]

2006[edit]

Lin started the season by reaching the semifinals of the German Open,[72] and had a same result in China Masters and China Open.[73][74] He failed to win the Malaysia Open in June, which saw his opponent Lee Chong Wei produce a superb display to save the title after being 13–20 down in the deciding game,[75] and also lost to Taufik Hidayat in Asian Games final.[76]

However, he won six individual titles in the season. He recaptured All England Open,[77] won Chinese Taipei Open,[78] Macau Open,[79] Hong Kong Open,[80] Japan Open,[81] and his first world title after beating his compatriot Bao Chunlai in the final.[82]

In May, Lin and his teammates had extended China's Thomas Cup reign, shut out Denmark 3–0 for second consecutive title.[83]

2007[edit]

Lin Dan entered 2007 with a loss to South Korea's Park Sung-hwan in the round of 16 at the Malaysia Open. A week later he captured the Korea Open by defeating Chinese teammate Chen Jin in the final. He went on to win the German Open and then the All England championships again, crushing compatriot Chen Yu 21–13, 21–12. In June, Lin Dan was part of Team China in the Sudirman Cup, held in Glasgow, Scotland. The Chinese team retained the cup after beating Indonesia 3–0 in the final. Later in the season Lin Dan defeated Wong Choong Hann of Malaysia and became the China Masters champion for 2007. In August, Lin Dan extended his reign as the world champion when he beat Indonesia's Sony Dwi Kuncoro 21–11, 22–20 in the final of the tournament held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Lin Dan thus became the first man since Yang Yang to win back to back world championships.

2008[edit]

Lin started the season with a defeat in the final of the Korea Open to Lee Hyun-il.[84] It was a match filled with controversy as Lin had a scuffle with South Korea's coach Li Mao after a line call dispute. Lin refused to apologize and received no punishment from Badminton World Federation (BWF) after its probe of the altercation.[85][86] In March he suffered another defeat to his compatriot Chen Jin in the final of the All England Open,[87] which was followed by press accusations that Lin "gave" the match to Chen in order to increase Chen's ranking points for Olympic qualification.[88] In the following week, Lin won his first Swiss Open.[89] At the Asia Championships, Lin was again accused of helping his compatriot when his loss to Chen Jin in the semifinals ensured Chen's qualification for the Olympic Games.[90]

In Thomas Cup, Lin won every match he played except his semifinal clash with Lee Chong Wei, and helped China to a third successive title in the tournament. After easy victories over Nigeria and Canada in the group stage, China defeated Thailand in the quarterfinals.[91] Despite Lin's loss to Lee Chong Wei in the semifinals, China still managed to qualify for the final over Malaysia 3–2 [92] and retained the title after beating South Korea 3–1.[93]

Lin won the Thailand Open, his last tournament before the 2008 Olympic Games.[94]

In Olympic Games, he beat Hong Kong's Ng Wei in the first round,[95] Park Sung-hwan in the second round,[96] and Peter Gade in the quarterfinals.[97] He then beat his teammate Chen Jin in straight sets to set up a "dream" final against Lee Chong Wei.[98] However, the final was a one-sided match as Lin demolished Lee 21–12, 21–8, and became the first men's singles player to win the Olympic gold as a first seed.[99]

Not back in action until the China Open in November, Lin again beat Lee in the final,[100] before losing to Chen Jin once again in the Hong Kong Open.[101] Lin was eligible to participate in the Masters Finals, but due to the withdrawal of China, he didn't take part in the tournament.[102]

2009[edit]

In March, Lin won his fourth All England title by defeating Lee Chong Wei, in only his first appearance since November 2008,[103] but lost to the same opponent in the final of Swiss Open a week later.[104]

He then participated in the Sudirman Cup in which he helped China to a 5–0 victory against England[105] and another clean swept against Japan[106] and Indonesia.[107] In the semifinals, it was another showdown between Lin and Lee Chong Wei in a tie against Malaysia, and Lin went on to win in straight games to set up a clash against Korea in the final.[108] In the final, Lin had no trouble beating Park Sung-hwan, helping China to secure the Cup for the third time in a row without conceding a match to any opponent in the tournament.[109]

In June, Lin failed to win the Indonesia Open after being knocked out in the quarter-finals.[110] It was the second tournament he failed to win, aside from an upset by South Korean's Choi Ho-jin in December during the East Asian Games final.[111]

Lin then went on to sweep all titles in tournaments he participated in between August and November. He became the first player to win the World Championships three times in Hyderabad, India, beating Chen Jin in the final.[112] Later Dan would go on to win his fourth China Masters title[113] and first French Open title.[114] He closed the season with the China Open title[115] before heading to Hong Kong for the East Asian Games.

2010[edit]

Lin started the season with failure to defend the All England Open title by losing in the quarterfinals,[116] and had another quarterfinals exit in the Swiss Open.[117] He only won his first seasonal title in the Badminton Asia Championships, which also marked his first title in the championships.[118]

Lin had his fifth appearance in Thomas Cup. After an easy win against Peru,[119] he won the double encounter against Korea's Park Sung-hwan in the second group tie and the quarterfinals respectively.[120] In the semifinals, he defeated Lee Chong Wei in straight games to help China reach the final,[121] before outclassing Indonesia for a fourth consecutive title.[122]

After the Thomas Cup triumph, Lin played in the World Championships in Paris, France. He won his opening match[123] and then beat Henri Hurskainen and Bao Chunlai in the second and third rounds respectively[124][125] before being upset by Park Sung-hwan in the quarterfinals. The day also saw his arch rival Lee Chong Wei exit from the tournament.[126] Lin then bounced back to win the China Masters,[127] but continued his lowlight in the season after being beaten in the final of the Japan Open,[128] and conceding walkovers in the quarterfinals of the China Open,[129] and Hong Kong Open respectively.[130]

However, Lin managed to win his first ever Asian Games gold medal in November by beating Lee Chong Wei in final,[131] thus becoming the first player to win all of the present major titles available to Asians in badminton, both individual and national team.[132]

2011[edit]

Lin Dan in 2011 German Open.

Lin began the year with a withdrawal in the Malaysia Open's quarterfinals, which marked his third withdrawal in a row since late 2010. This action caused criticism mostly by Taufik Hidayat, who wanted the Badminton World Federation (BWF) to investigate.[133] His mother denied that he retired on purpose, and cited he had a waist injury.[134] However, he sprang back to win the first ever million dollar badminton tournament, Korea Open by beating Lee Chong Wei in the final.[135] He then won the German Open, beating his compatriot Chen Jin in the final.[136]

However, Lin's hope to become the first player to win five All England titles in the open era was dashed[137] when he was defeated by Lee Chong Wei in the final.[138] He then won his second Asian Championships in April on a day which saw China sweep all five titles.[139] Lin helped China to a fourth consecutive Sudirman Cup title in May, defeating Denmark 3–0 in the final.[140] In June, Lin withdrew from the Singapore Open final due to gastric flu, this drew the jeers from fans in the stadium.[141] Just few days later, he was stunned by Sho Sasaki in the second round of Indonesia Open.[142]

In August, he won his fourth World Championships title by beating Lee Chong Wei in final in Wembley Arena, a venue which would host the same competition for 2012 Summer Olympics. This dashed Lee's hope of becoming the first Malaysian to win a gold medal in the World Championships.[143]

In September, he was ousted in the semi-finals of China Masters,[144] and withdrew from the semifinals of Japan Open.[145] This was followed up by a shock exit in the second round of the Denmark Open to Hong Kong player Wong Wing Ki,[146] and retired in the semifinals of French Open despite leading the match, stated it is due to paronychia.[147][148] The retirement also marked his sixth in the season, many media quest the retirement was due to the strategic consideration to let China team have full quota in men's singles for 2012 Olympics.[149] However, Li Yongbo said Lin retirement is not a "gift", this is due to that BWF stated that each top players are compulsory to participate in number of tournament and Lin needs a better condition towards the Olympics.[150] Lin voice frustrated that the peak schedule was the reason he had a most retirement in a season.[151] He ended the last three tournaments in high note, won his fifth Hong Kong Open and China Open title respectively,[152][153] and his first ever Super Series Master Finals title.[154]

2012[edit]

Lin Dan at the 2012 Olympics

Lin started the year by losing to Lee Chong Wei in the final of the Korea Open,[155] and a second round defeat in the Malaysia Open.[156] He won his fifth German Open title in March, and his first of the season.[157] He then won the All England Open in March, thus becoming the first man in 33 years to win five titles.[158] In April, Lin withdrew from the semifinals of the Badminton Asia Championships due to a waist injury, and the move also helped his compatriot Chen Jin secure the Olympics berth.[159]

He helped China win their fifth consecutive Thomas Cup title without losing a single match in every tie he played.[160] He then bowed out from the semifinals of the Thailand Open, which he complained of his fatigue before the tournament began.[161]

At the 2012 Summer Olympics, Lin eased against Ireland's Scott Evans,[162] and outperformed Taufik Hidayat in the second round.[163] In the quarterfinals, Japan's Sho Sasaki almost showed him the exit after surviving from rubber games.[164] He had another easy victory against Lee Hyun-il in the semifinals to set up another meeting with his rival Lee Chong Wei.[165] In the repeat of 2008's final, Lin this time lost the first game to Lee but bounced to take the second. The third game became a thriller as Lin edged to a gold medal, narrowly beating Lee by two points despite Lee leading most of the time.[166] Lin also became the first men's singles player to retain the Olympic title.[7]

2013[edit]

Lin made his only appearance of the year at the Badminton Asia Championships, his first tournament since the London 2012 Olympics. He only reached the third round of the tournament, then had to withdraw due to an injury.[167] Lin Dan was also given a wild card entry for the World Championships in Guangzhou, China due to his ability and popularity; even though his world ranking had not enabled him to qualify.[168] He eventually converted the wildcard into his fifth title of the tournament, by beating his all time rival Lee Chong Wei by forfeit.[169]

2014[edit]

After seven months absence, Lin, ranked 104th in the World Ranking, returned and took the title in the China Masters and subsequently won the Badminton Asia Championships title.[170] However, the BWF would not grant Lin a wild card entry into the 2014 World Championships, as they did in 2013. Subsequently, Lin could not defend his title which was won by Chinese teammate Chen Long [171] Lin was part of the China Thomas Cup squad, but due to his world ranking, he was only eligible to play as third singles as China was upset by Japan in the semifinals.[172]

In June, Lin lost in the quarterfinals of Japan Open.[173] Afterwards, he won the Australian Open, his first Super Series title since the 2012 All England Open.[174]

Awards[edit]

Lin won the Eddie Choong Player of the Year award for two consecutive years in 2006 and 2007.[175] He also secured the BWF Best Male Player of the Year in 2008.[176] Lin was voted Most Valuable Player (MVP) during the 2010 Asian Games in Guangzhou, China.[177] On January 16, 2011, he was voted as the 2010 best male athlete in CCTV Sports Personality of the Year for his clean sweep in major badminton titles.[178]

Individual finals[edit]

Further information: Lin Dan career statistics

Titles (56)[edit]

No. Year Tournament Opponent in Final Score
1. 2002 Korea Open South Korea Shon Seung-mo 1–7, 7–3, 7–3, 7–5
2. 2003 Denmark Open China Chen Yu 15–4, 15–6
3. 2003 Hong Kong Open Thailand Boonsak Ponsana 15–4, 9–15, 15–8
4. 2003 China Open Malaysia Wong Choong Hann 17–16, 15–12
5. 2004 Swiss Open China Bao Chunlai 15–12, 15–6
6. 2004 All England Open Denmark Peter Gade 9–15, 15–5, 15–8
7. 2004 Denmark Open (2) China Xia Xuanze 15–12, 15–11
8. 2004 German Open China Xia Xuanze 17–16, 15–9
9. 2004 China Open (2) China Bao Chunlai 15–11, 15–10
10. 2005 German Open (2) Malaysia Muhammad Hafiz Hashim 15–8, 15–8
11. 2005 Japan Open China Chen Hong 15–4, 2–0r
12. 2005 China Masters China Bao Chunlai 15–6, 15–13
13. 2005 Hong Kong Open (2) China Bao Chunlai 15–10, 15–4
14. 2005 World Cup Thailand Boonsak Ponsana 21–13, 21–11
15. 2006 All England Open (2) South Korea Lee Hyun-il 15–7, 15–7
16. 2006 Chinese Taipei Open Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–18, 12–21, 21–11
17. 2006 Macau Open Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–18, 18–21, 21–18
18. 2006 Hong Kong Open (3) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–19, 8–21, 21–16
19. 2006 World Championships China Bao Chunlai 18–21, 21–17, 21–12
20. 2006 Japan Open (2) Indonesia Taufik Hidayat 16–21, 21–16, 21–3
21. 2006 World Cup (2) China Chen Yu 21–19, 19–21, 21–17
22. 2007 Korea Open (2) China Chen Jin 21–14, 21–19
23. 2007 German Open (3) China Chen Yu Walkover
24. 2007 All England Open (3) China Chen Yu 21–13, 21–12
25. 2007 China Masters (2) Malaysia Wong Choong Hann 21–19, 21–9
26. 2007 World Championships (2) Indonesia Sony Dwi Kuncoro 21–11, 22–20
27. 2007 Denmark Open (3) China Bao Chunlai 21–15, 21–12
28. 2007 Hong Kong Open (4) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 9–21, 21–15, 21–15
29. 2008 Swiss Open (2) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–13, 21–18
30. 2008 Thailand Open Thailand Boonsak Ponsana 17–21, 21–15, 21–13
31. 2008 Olympic Games Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–12, 21–8
32. 2008 China Open (3) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–18, 21–9
33. 2009 All England Open (4) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–19, 21–12
34. 2009 World Championships (3) China Chen Jin 21–18, 21–16
35. 2009 China Masters (3) Thailand Boonsak Ponsana 21–17, 21–17
36. 2009 French Open Indonesia Taufik Hidayat 21–6, 21–15
37. 2009 China Open (4) Denmark Jan Ø. Jørgensen 21–12, 21–12
38. 2010 Badminton Asia Championships China Wang Zhengming 21–17, 21–15
39. 2010 China Masters (4) China Chen Long 21–15, 13–21, 21–14
40. 2010 Asian Games Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–13, 15–21, 21–10
41. 2011 Korea Open (3) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–19, 14–21, 21–16
42. 2011 German Open (4) China Chen Jin 21–19, 21–11
43. 2011 Badminton Asia Championships (2) China Bao Chunlai 21–19, 21–13
44. 2011 World Championships (4) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 20–22, 21–14, 23–21
45. 2011 Hong Kong Open (5) China Chen Jin 21–12, 21–19
46. 2011 China Open (5) China Chen Long 21–17, 26–24
47. 2011 Super Series Masters Finals China Chen Long 21–12, 21–16
48. 2012 German Open (5) Indonesia Simon Santoso 21–11, 21–11
49. 2012 All England Open (5) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–19, 6–2r
50. 2012 Olympic Games (2) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 15–21, 21–10, 21–19
51. 2013 World Championships (5) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 16–21, 21–13, 20–17r
52. 2014 China Masters (5) China Tian Houwei 21–14, 21–9
53. 2014 Badminton Asia Championships (3) Japan Sho Sasaki 14–21, 21–9, 21–15
54. 2014 Australian Open Indonesia Simon Santoso 22–24, 21–16, 21–7
55. 2014 Chinese Taipei Open (2) China Wang Zhengming 21–19, 21–14
56. 2014 Asian Games (2) China Chen Long 12–21, 21–16, 21–16

Runners-up (18)[edit]

No. Year Tournament Opponent in Final Score
1. 2001 Asian Badminton Championships China Xia Xuanze 10–15, 9–15
2. 2001 Denmark Open China Bao Chunlai 5–7, 1–7, 0–7
3. 2003 Japan Open China Xia Xuanze 12–15, 10–15
4. 2003 German Open South Korea Lee Hyun-il 4–15, 4–15
5. 2005 All England Open China Chen Hong 15–8, 5–15, 2–15
6. 2005 Malaysia Open Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 15–17, 15–9, 9–15
7. 2005 World Championships Indonesia Taufik Hidayat 3–15, 7–15
8. 2006 Malaysia Open (2) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 18–21, 21–18, 21–23
9. 2006 Asian Games Indonesia Taufik Hidayat 15–21, 20–22
10. 2008 Korea Open South Korea Lee Hyun-il 21–4, 21–23, 23–25
11. 2008 All England Open (2) China Chen Jin 20–22, 23–25
12. 2008 Hong Kong Open China Chen Jin 9–21, 21–9, 17–21
13. 2009 Swiss Open Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 16–21, 16–21
14. 2009 East Asian Games South Korea Choi Ho-jin 20–22, 17–21
15. 2010 Japan Open (2) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 20–22, 21–16, 17–21
16. 2011 All England Open (3) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 17–21, 17–21
17. 2011 Singapore Open China Chen Jin Walkover
18. 2012 Korea Open (2) Malaysia Lee Chong Wei 21–12, 18–21, 14–21

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External links[edit]