End Of An Era: China's Badminton Superstar Lin Dan Announces Retirement

 - Sakshi Post

Lin Dan, China's two-time Olympic badminton champion announced his retirement on July 4. He took to his social media and thanked everyone for their constant support. The 36-year-old who took gold at Beijing and London Games will not play in the next Olympics in Tokyo. The Chinese badminton legend was fondly called 'Super Dan' by his fans across the world. He is one of the greatest left-handed players and won two Olympics, five world championships, two Asian Games singles titles, and was also a part of Chinese teams in 5 Sudirman Cups and six Thomas Cups.

Malaysian former world No.1, Lee Chong Wei ended his career last year after undergoing treatment for nose cancer. He was Lin's great rival for more than a decade. Lin Dan said on social media platform Weibo, "After 20 years, I have to say goodbye to the national team. It is very difficult to speak it out." He further added, "Now I’m (nearly) 37 years old, and my physical fitness and pain no longer allow me to fight side by side with my teammates.”

Lin in his statement wrote that, "In 2000, I became the Chinese team’s Lin Dan, and I was happy and proud. My family, coaches, team members and fans accompanied me in many hardships, ups, and downs. Every jump smash was a hope for victory; I journeyed across four Olympics. I was not thinking of leaving and not willing to think of it. I gave everything to this sport that I love. ‘Persevere’, I tell myself during every hard time, to let my career prolong. Compared to my younger days when I chased rankings, these (last few) years I challenged myself to the limits of a senior athlete, and living the spirit of never giving up."

Fans and celebs took to their micro-blogging sites to share their thoughts on Lin Dan's retirement. Here are some of the tweets.

Kidambi Srikanth wrote as, "I remember playing my first-ever super series final against him. Playing him in China itself was special and he has been one of my favourite players to play against."

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