CHINA’S Xiong Guobao comes from an era of mighty players but he regards Olympic champion Lin Dan as the greatest men’s singles shuttler of all time. Guobao, who formed China’s fearsome trio in the 1980s alongside Yang Yang and Zhao Jianhua, said Lin Dan towers above the others because of his a natural talent just like China’s Olympic hurdles champion Liu Xiang.
Such is the physical strength possessed by Lin Dan that Guobao has advised rival Lee Chong Wei not to be too focused on improving his power and fitness but to work on sharpening his skills and tactics if he wishes to have any chance of beating the China ace. “I have played with some of the finest and I think Lin Dan is the greatest player of all time,” said Guobao, who was nicknamed the “Ironman” for his near invincibility.
“He is a natural talent and physically very strong. I believe he has inherited that genetically from his parents. He is in the same mould as the equally talented hurdler Liu Xiang,” said Guobao at the Michael’s Badminton Academy (MBA) in Puchong yesterday.
“I believe he will play Chong Wei in the final of the London Olympics and the latter shouldn’t put too much emphasis on improving his physical condition…