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Lin Dan wins Badminton Olympic Gold

August 20, 2008

World No. 1 Lin Dan crushed Malaysia’a Golden hopes by trashing World No. 2 Lee Chong Wei 21-12, 21-8 to win the Men’s Singles Badminton Olympic Gold.

There were a lot of buzz and hype about the finals, but to me the game ( I mean Chong Wei) did not live to the expectations. Lin Dan proved his dominance with very forceful strokes and with his lightning court coverage. He studied every move Chong Wei made and he was quick to react to every shot to his advantage. Lee Chong Wei did not have any answers to “Super” Dan on that day.

“I felt a lot of pressure playing in front of my home crowd,” said an exhilarated Lin. “I thought it would be difficult to play the match and the pressure of the crowd might even be to my disadvantage, but I played well.” All credits to Lin Dan for that superb performance and for rising to the occasion. This is what makes him a world champion.

Lin Dan winning the gold medal
Lin Dan winning the gold medal

On the other hand, if we look at Lee Chong Wei, when he was entering the court, he had that nervous look on his face. In my mind I asked the question, “A world No. 2 showing his nervousness before the game? How can this be?”  We were always thought to enter the court like a Tiger (Like what Lin Dan did).

 

“I suffered a lot of pressure tonight but I do not want to use it as an excuse for my defeat,” Chong Wei said. What a statement… To me, I think Lin Dan had more pressure on his hands than Chong Wei did.

“I have tried my best but Lin Dan played perfectly tonight,” said Malaysian sport icon Lee. “I couldn’t match his shuttle speed. He was much stronger than me and controlled the whole match.” That’s a good thing, he gives praises when its due.

“At the end of the match it is not who is playing at a higher level, it is all about who is mentally stronger,” Lee commented on his loss. Again, why isn’t Chong Wei mentally stronger than or as strong mentally as Lin Dan? After all he’s the world no. 2. I can’t recall if I’ve seen Nadal never looking nervous when he played Federer and neither should Chong Wei. It shows what kind of mental strength the Malaysians have. To me, they can’t handle pressure, hence why we only managed 1 silver.

I would like to end on some reason’s on Why Lin Dan had more pressure on his hands:

1. China’s target was to get 3 gold medals. Less than that it would be a failure. If Lin Dan lost, it would be a failure for China.

2. Lin Dan had 6,800 supporters in the stadium watching and expecting him to win. On top of that, I dont know how many million Chinese were watching the game supporting Lin Dan.

3. Lin Dan lost to Chong Wei in the Thomas Cup, more pressure for him to win.

 Ciao da mao

Mark

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Lensgypsy permalink
    August 20, 2008 8:15 am

    I am looking for answers too as I had expected an even match between CWei and LDan. Instead, what we had was a lopsided match. I am sure many Malaysians were disappointed. I don’t know. CWei looked tired, not his normal speedy, attacking self. Shud’ve changed his game plan when LDan is so inspired. Nervous? That’s the saddest tragedy of all sports pple. I’ve played competitive badminton since pri 2 and always go on court NOT TO BE BEATEN. Of course, you don’t always win, but what I can say is it will always be a fight before I lose! And, I wonder what advice MSidek was giving to his protege. CWei looked so estatic with his win over Lee Hyun Il. We all expected him to roar at the final. Disappointing but kudos to LDan for playing so well. His shot anticipation was quite superb!

  2. Mark D. Lee permalink*
    August 20, 2008 4:02 pm

    Hey Lensgypsy,

    Many Malaysians dissapointed… I agree that he should have changed his game since Lin Dan was playing a very fast game.. Maybe he could have slowed it down by playing more stokes and during the stroke play then only he mixes it with some smashes to catch Lin Dan off guard or something.

    To me the saddest part was he didnt go out fighting.. I would expect him to be motivating himself in the second set and to show us that he’s giving his best, instead most of the time, I could see him showing defeat thru his emotions in court.

    Funny thing these days is that players now look for answers from their coaches during the game.. This is quite sad as in the past, a world class player would have to find his own answers to win and they would need to strategize themselves on how to change their play to defeat the opponent.

    I hope we have another Malaysian junior in the making for the next Olympics. 🙂

  3. Lensgypsy permalink
    August 20, 2008 10:09 pm

    Hi Mark Lee,

    I agree with you. But CWei did benefit from MSidek’s game plan in his 2nd set with Hyun Il (notice how he played more low shots and net?). Maybe in time, he will learn. Sometime back, I was estactic when Malaysia produced its first World No 1 in CWei. The country has now good infrastructure to keep producing young talents. Skills and physique aside, training the mind is key. Not many sports pay attention to this. And let’s hope more good female players are groomed. China’s Zhang Ning played an outstanding match to beat Xie Fang. She deserved every bit her 2nd gold. See, she had one gold and she was not satisfied. I hope Malaysia’s badminton players take note. Or have they been soften by all the rewards. Hmm…

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