Best Front Court Player Ever in Badminton

Best front court player ever in Badminton
Best front court player ever in Badminton

Who is the Ultimate Master of the Net Game?

Lets have a look at the Top 10 and their strengths and weaknesses…

10. Yuta Watanabe (Japan)

The young man from Japan emerged on world stage only two years ago and has a lot of time to achieve more. But he has reached a fantastic level already, competing with and beating some players that are still ahead of him in this ranking. I think his most impressive feat is his defense. Those reactions are just breathtaking. But his feel for the net game is pretty strong as well.

  • Creativity: 97%
  • Speed / Movement: 100%
  • Anticipation: 90%
  • Technique / Feeling: 97%
  • Mentality: 90%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 60%

9. Jonas Rasmussen (Denmark)

Probably the best Danish Front Court Player ever. Very adventerous playing style, almost Indonesian style, very creative approach.

  • Creativity: 95%
  • Speed / Movement: 75%
  • Anticipation: 93%
  • Technique / Feeling: 100%
  • Mentality: 85%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 80%

8. Sigit Budiarto (Indonesia)

This legend was a sloppy genius. His partnership with Chandra Wijaja was very successful, yet I think he could have achieved more – given his talent. I vividly remember their stunning loss to Howard Bach and Tony Ginawan in Anaheim 2005.

  • Creativity: 95%
  • Speed / Movement: 85%
  • Anticipation: 85%
  • Technique / Feeling: 96%
  • Mentality: 80%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 80%

7. Zhang Nan (China)

Zhang Nan is best known for his mixed doubles partnership with Zhao Yunlei. However he teamed up with Fu Haifeng in 2014 and they won the gold medal in Rio. So he was not too shabby in Mens Doubles as well. Although I think, it was pretty lucky circumstances with the biggest competition out of form and the Malaysians in the Final. Nevertheless a fantastic front court player. Very controlled though, not as daring as the other guys in this list.

  • Creativity: 80%
  • Speed / Movement: 90%
  • Anticipation: 80%
  • Technique / Feeling: 85%
  • Mentality: 100%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 85%

6. Lee Yong Dae (Korea)

Griff88 / CC BY-SA

He was never a favourite of mine, because of his defensive approach to badminton. Never liked his attitude towards his partners as well. But you have to give credit, he was super strong and super consistent. He understands the game of badminton very well and hardly ever makes a wrong choice of shot. He was not as deadly at the net as the guys that are yet to come. He was going for long rallies.

  • Creativity: 65%
  • Speed / Movement: 95%
  • Anticipation: 90%
  • Technique / Feeling: 85%
  • Mentality: 100%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 100%

5. Koo Kien Keat (Malaysia)

Another sloppy genius and even more talented than Sigit Budiarto. Have a look at the exhibitions with him on Youtube. His racket skills are spectacular and second to none. He had a good, quite successful partnership with Tan. However I feel, he could have achieved more. I always felt, there was some urgency missing in their big games. Their strong competition always showed more grit in the end.

  • Creativity: 100%
  • Speed / Movement: 80%
  • Anticipation: 85%
  • Technique / Feeling: 100%
  • Mentality: 70%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 65%

4. Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo (Indonesia)

The current dominator and still young. Has all the time to climb up the ladder of success. Although he is yet to win a major, I already rate him this high. He is a joy to watch and dominates the BWF World Tour for more than 2 years now. And he is the only player I have ever seen, that his legendary fellow countryman (coming later) is sometimes scared of playing at the net and would rather lift. That alone speaks volumes. He is just soooo fast and quick with the racket. I am very excited to see, what he will achieve.

  • Creativity: 100%
  • Speed / Movement: 100%
  • Anticipation: 95%
  • Technique / Feeling: 98%
  • Mentality: 80%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 70%

3. Cai Yun (China)

Part of maybe the best mens doubles team ever. Incredibly good allround player. His area in the partnership with Fu Haifeng was certainly the front court and he made the difference with his agression and speed. But his defence, smashes and just variety in all areas made him so complete. And of course like all these top players, he possesed and absolute winner mentality. In crunch times he was always ready. His trophy cupboard says it all.

  • Creativity: 85%
  • Speed / Movement: 98%
  • Anticipation: 92%
  • Technique / Feeling: 90%
  • Mentality: 100%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 90%

2. Tony Gunawan (Indonesia)

Olympic Champion, twice World Champion and many, many more titles with 3 different partners. Need I say more. The most amazing of all of his performances was certainly when -at the age of 30- he carried Howard Bach to the World Championship Title in Anaheim. The shuttle seemed to search Gunawans racket and he was so deadly when he hit it. Fantastic player and at the net game only second to one…

  • Creativity: 90%
  • Speed / Movement: 85%
  • Anticipation: 90%
  • Technique / Feeling: 95%
  • Mentality: 100%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 98%

1. Hendra Setiawan (Indonesia)

Nardisoero / CC BY-SA

There is simply no doubt. Hendra Setiawan is the PERFECT Front Court Player. I have seen every single minute of him that is available on Youtube and therefore can judge it. The technique is flawless, his understanding and reading of the game perfect, the longevity is unmatched (World Champion 2007 and 2019!!!). I have never seen anyone play this game of Badminton in such a beautiful stlyle. Luckily with Mohammad Ahsan he got a partner that complements him so good. What is even more impressive than all his titles and skills is his behaviour. He seems to enjoy an almost “Federer-like” popularity in the Badminton circuit. He is just so calm, friendly and respectful. Lets hope he continues to play for as long as possible!

  • Creativity: 100%
  • Speed / Movement: 85%
  • Anticipation: 100%
  • Technique / Feeling: 100%
  • Mentality: 100%
  • Longevity / Consistency: 100%

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