Kuala Lumpur [Malaysia], May 27 (ANI): Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan, two of badminton’s biggest performers of their time, were inducted into the Badminton World Federation (BWF) Hall of Fame on Friday at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre in Malaysia.
It is another title to add to an already amazing collection of accolades.
Lee has 69 career titles and the record for the most weeks spent as the world’s number-one shuttler: 349. With three silver medals, the 40-year-old shuttler is also Malaysia’s most decorated Olympic athlete.
“Being in the Hall of Fame is good for me and my career. I hope it can encourage more young players and show them that if they work hard, they can also be elected for the Hall of Fame,” Lee said at Friday’s press conference as quoted by Olympics.com.
Lin is a two-time Olympic and five-time world champion from the People’s Republic of China.
Lin won 66 tournaments throughout his 20-year career, including the All England Open six times.
“I feel very, very proud to be inducted to the Hall of Fame. I am very lucky with all I have achieved,” Lin said during the press conference.
Lee and Lin have played against each other 40 times on the badminton court between 2004 and 2018. The ‘Lee-Lin rivalry’ was regarded as one of the most heated in the sport.
“There has not been a rivalry like ours over the past twenty years, and we always matched each other at the top tournaments,” Lin claimed.
“We always wanted to beat each other and that encouraged both of us to improve. I knew that I always had to beat Lin Dan to be a champion,” added Lee.
Lin has the advantage, having won 28 of their 40 meetings. They met twice in the Olympic Games final, with the Chinese shuttler coming out on top both times. However, in Rio 2016, the Malaysian pulled off one of his biggest career victories by defeating his archrival in the semi-finals after three hard-fought games.
Lin announced his retirement in 2020, at the age of 37, after battling discomfort and ailments.
Lee, on the other hand, had retired from tennis after being diagnosed with nose cancer a year prior.