I’ve spent many hours reflecting on ways to improve certain shots, why some shots failed…you get the idea. After class I used to come home and watch online videos of past matches. My coach suggested it as a way to help improve my play.
So here are my top 6 favourite players:
- Nozomi Okuhara – she’s probably the shortest player (1.55m) in the women’s singles top 10 but she’s also one of the fastest. Her speed, stamina and fighting spirit are an inspiration, especially for short people
- Misaki Matsutomo – a relatively small Japanese female player (1.59m) who is fast, hunts the shuttle at the net and has a solid defence. Her success with her women’s doubles partner Takahashi is perhaps due to a combination of the fact they’ve been playing together since high school, strong communication and complementary styles.
- Ma Jin – A Chinese player whom I admire for her deft touches, speed and superb sense of game play. When playing mixed doubles with her partner Xu Chen she’s fast, strategic and poised throughout the storm
- Hendra Setiawan – Quick reflexes, great power and placement are the trademarks of a great men’s doubles player. In addition, Indonesia’s Hendra Setiawan never seems to get phased out and his superb game play sets up his heavy smashing partners to dominate their opponents. A wonderfully savvy player
- Lee Chong Wei – Malaysian current world no. 1 with amazing physical abilities and mental strength. Although his never-say-die approach suggests a stoic battling spirit, he has expressed the intention to retire soon, which is a loss for world badminton. I believe there will never be another player like him.
- Lin Dan – handsome left-hander and former world no. 1. A superstar in China, virtually unknown overseas outside badminton circles (unless you buy stuff from his sponsors like underwear, bags, shoes, etc)