Updated at: 02-08-2023 - By: Matt Roberts

Who among us doesn’t have fond memories of passing the time by playing a game of badminton in the backyard?

However, while many people from different countries and cultures took up this sport as a passion and a way of life, only a select few made history and established themselves as some of the best badminton players ever.

There has been a tremendous rise in the YONEX industry and numerous countries have taken the sport to new heights.

However, before we get into the specifics, below is a list of today’s players.

15 Best Badminton Players of All Time

We’ll take a look at the top 15 badminton players in the world. This is our top 15 list, with the greatest at the end to keep things interesting. Then continue to read!

15. Chen Long

chen long

Date of Birth: 18 Jan 1989, Age: 33 Years Old

Years Active: 2007 to Present

Career Records: 441 wins, 114 losses

Handedness: Right
While formerly the world’s best-known solo artist, China’s major player in the category has fallen to sixth place.

With such accomplishments as:

The Badminton World Federation (BWF) has named him its Player of the Year (2014 & 2015)

The May 1st, Labor Day, National Labor Award (2015)

Athlete of the Year Award honors the best athlete of the year (2018)

Many young badminton players look up to him and his “Be yourself” philosophy.

Chen Long, the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic gold medallist, won silver at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

That’s not all; he has also won 18 gold medals, nine silver medals, and six bronze medal trophies in various international competitions like World Championships and the 2012 London Olympic Games, as well as the Sudirman Cup and Thomas Cup.

14. Morten Frost Hansen

Date of Birth: 4April 1958, Age: 63 Years Old

Years Active: 1976 to 1991

Career Records: 71 wins, 17 losses

Handedness: Right
Known as “Mr. Gentleman,” Morten Frost was in the top three of the Badminton world rankings for twelve years.

In his style, he used a combination of the classic singles game, where he would clear (lob) and drop, as well as smashes for weak returns.

There was a greater emphasis in modern singles games on smashing from the start of a rally in order to generate openings.

He was inducted into the BWF Badminton Hall of Fame in 1998 for his stellar performances in the 1980s, which included back-to-back European gold medals in 1984 and 1986, as well as silver medals at the 1985 and 1987 World Championships.

He won two Silver medals in the Olympics, in 1985 and 1987, thanks to strong performances.

13. Viktor Axelsen

Date of Birth: 4 January 1994, Age: 28 Years Old

Years Active: 2010 to present

Career Records: 339 wins, 135 losses

Handedness: Right
When it came to the European Men’s Team Championships, Axelsen was a crucial member of the Danish squad.

Until February 2021, Viktor Axelsen was ranked second in the world, having previously been regarded as the best player of 2017.

There has never been a singles player to win all four BWF World Tour 1000 tournaments in the same season.

He is considered as one of Denmark’s greatest athletes, having won gold in the Olympics (2020) and the World Championships (2016 and 2017).

12. Son Wan-ho

Son Wan-ho

Date of Birth: 17 May 1988, Age: 33 Years Old

Years Active: 2005 to present

Career Records: 339 wins, 188 losses

Handedness: Right
When Son Wan-ho became the world number one in Men’s Singles in May 2017, he was widely praised for his defensive abilities, calmness in stressful situations, and his ability to win matches in a short period of time.

He has a long list of accolades to his name, including multiple high-smashing titles and numerous championships.

The World BWF Championships.

The Summer Universiade.”

The BWF World Tour (Three titles)

sequence of epic proportions (Two titles, Five runners-up)

The Grand Prix (Four titles, Two runners-up)

International Competitions and Events (One runner-up)

He was a key member of his country’s team, and as a result, he has a slew of prestigious silverware and medals to show for it.

11. Kento Momota

Date of Birth: 1 September 1994, Age: 27 Years Old

Years Active: 2011 to present

Career Records: 341 wins, 81 losses

Handedness: Left
As one of the most talented players of the current decade, Kento Momoto, who was born in Japan, is widely respected. His playing style is comparable to that of Lin Dan and Lee Chong Wei.

He is surely on this list because of his ease on the court, distinguishing playing talents, and flawlessness for strokes and smashes..

As a result of his supreme methods, opponents find it tough to get through to him because of his quickness, talent, swift footwork and excellent offensive and defensive abilities.

10. Han Aiping

Date of Birth: 22 April 1962, Age: 59 Years Old

Years Active: 1978 to 1989

Career Records: 21 wins, 4 losses

Handedness: Right
Women’s badminton legend Han Aiping was a national hero in China and around the world in the 1980s.

Only a few players were able to handle her because of her incredible overhead stroke and vision.

Throughout the decade, Aiping and Li Lingwei, her arch-rivals and sometimes double partners, dominated International Singles play.

She is one of the greatest women’s volleyball players of all time, having won five International Cups, two Asian Games, and the Uber Cup (the women’s world team competition).

9. Peter Høeg Gade

Peter Høeg Gade

Date of Birth: 14 December 1976, Age: 45 Years Old

Years Active: 1994 to 2012

Career Records: 517 wins, 155 losses

Handedness: Right
As a Danishman, Peter Heg Gade was the world’s number one tennis player from 1998 to 2001.

He was hailed as the greatest badminton player of all time because of his illustrious career on the court.

It’s no surprise that he’s a five-time European Championship champion in the men’s singles event and a whopping twenty-two Grand Prix titles after being born to amateur badminton players.

He is one of the most successful Badminton players in the world with a trophy cabinet full with accolades.

8. Li Lingwei

Date of Birth: 4 January 1964, Age: 58 Years Old

Years Active: 1980 to 1989

Career Records: 30 wins, 2 losses

Handedness: Right
China’s Li Lingwei was a role model for many and one of the greatest women’s tennis players of all time.

Three World Champions gold medals, seven World Cup gold medals, two Asian Games gold medals, and three Uber Cup gold medals attest to her illustrious career in badminton.

In addition, Lingwei was chosen to the International Olympic Committee for the 2012 Summer Games. As if that weren’t enough, she was chosen to serve as the 2016 Chinese Olympic Committee’s Vice President.

7. Liem Swei King

Date of Birth: 28 February 1956, Age: 65 Years Old

Years Active: 1974 to 1988

Career Records: 14 wins, 3 losses

Handedness: Right
Liem Swei King, who was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002, was one of the few players worth keeping an eye on. His dedication and hard ethic were key to his success in the game.

In 1980 and 1983, he made it to the Ultimate Round of the World Championships only to lose both times.

His biopic, “King,” tells the story of how he came to the realization that it was either now or never for ambitious young actors and musicians all across the world.

6. Rudy Hartono

Date of Birth: 18 August 1949, Age: 72 Years Old

Years Active: 1965 to 1982

Career Records: 15 wins, 4 losses

Handedness: Right
When he was at his peak, Indonesian badminton player Rudy Hartono was one of the best in the world.

Rudy Hartono, a world-class badminton player.

From 1968 to 1974, he won the Men’s Singles championship in the renowned All England Championship eight times in a row, and he also won the World Championship in 1980 on his lone appearance at the event.

In 1968-1976, a Guinness World Record holder dominated the competition, capturing eight titles in a row, the first time that had ever been accomplished.

5. Tony Gunawan

Tony Gunawan

Date of Birth: 9 April 1975, Age: 46 Years Old

Years Active: 1992 to 2001

Career Records: 501 wins, 163 losses

Handedness: Right hand
Former badminton player Tony Gunawan was an Indo-American. Gunawan was the first Indonesian to win an Olympic gold medal and a World championship title, following a subsequent American World champion.

He is widely regarded as the greatest badminton doubles player of all time, and he excelled in the forecourt in particular.

With three men’s doubles gold medals at the 2000, 2001, and 2005 IBF World Championships, he truly dominated the stage.

4. Taufik Hidayat

Date of Birth: 10 August 1981, Age: 40 Years Old

Years Active: 1996 to 2014

Career Records: 413 wins, 138 losses

Handedness: Right
In the 2006 World Championships, Indonesian badminton player Taufik Hidayat set a new world record for the quickest smash (305 km/h).

Hidayat was a fun player to watch because of his adoration from fans for his magical performances and his renown for his distinct and original style of play.

An up-and-coming player in the 2000s, with a winning mentality and a relentless pursuit of victory, he swiftly established himself as a legendary figure in the sport.

3. Gao Ling

Date of Birth: 14 March 1979, Age: 42 Years Old

Years Active: 1993 to 2009

Career Records: 611 wins, 128 losses

Handedness: Right
Gao Ling holds the record for the most medals won by a single player in the history of women’s badminton, with four, making her one of the all-time greats of the YONEX All England Championships.

From 2001 to 2006, Huang Sue and her six other women’s doubles partners wrote history by winning six straight championships.

Ling is guaranteed a spot on our list of the greatest badminton players because of all the accolades and trophies she has won.

2. Lee Chong Wei

Lee Chong Wei

Date of Birth: 21 October 1982, Age: 39 Years Old

Years Active: 2000 to 2019

Career Records: 741 wins, 146 losses

Handedness: Right
He’s the only Malaysian badminton player to have held the World No. 1 rating for more than a year, from 21 August 2008 to 12 June 2012. Datuk Lee Chong Wei was born in Malaysia.

As a Men’s Singles Olympic silver medallist three times over, he has also won the Badminton Asia Championships in 2006 and 2014.

Malacca Governor Moha Khalil Yaakob honored him with the title “Datuk Wira.”

1. Lin Dan

Lin Dan

Date of Birth: 14 October 1983, Age: 38 Years Old

Years Active: 2000 to 2020

Career Records: 684 wins, 145 losses

Handedness: Left
The term “Lin Dan” automatically comes up when discussing the most important players in badminton. He is the greatest badminton player ever to wield a racket.

At the tender age of 21, he has been dubbed “Super Dan” after winning an Olympic gold medal.

Lin Dan, the world’s greatest badminton player.

As an Olympic champion, five-time world champion, six time All England champion with an incredible record of 666 wins, it was his finest achievement.

He was virtually unstoppable in his prime as a player due to his aggressiveness and top-notch defense.

He had ruled the court for nearly two decades with a combination of tenacity, poise, and an eagle’s eye.

Honorable Mentions

In addition to the players already listed, a slew of newcomers and up-and-comers have made a reputation for themselves.

We’ve included a few honorable mentions in our top 10:.
PV Sindhu

Nozomi Okuhara

Akane Yamaguchi

Harim Haryanto

Lee Yong-Dae

Li Xuerui

Chou Tien Chen

Anthony Sinisuka Ginting

Kidambi Srikanth

Jonatan Christie

Tommy Sugiarto


Hard work establishes a level playing field between you and your competitors, influencing your performance. “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take,” goes the ancient adage.

You’ll never be successful until you have a positive outlook and put your all into whatever you’re doing. Dedication, effort, and diligence are required by even the best athletes in the world to get to this point.