With all these negativities, I decided to do a full translation on the Lin Dan interview as it will give non-Chinese speaking members a better understanding on the new Lin Dan.
It is not of professional standard, but it is the best that I can do.
So, here you go:
I: Interviewer LD: Lin Dan
I: What was your target when entering WC2013?
LD: To play each rally the best I could.
I: Never expecting to get gold?
LD: Not at all. To me, that is unrealistic. You stayed away from competition for nearly a year, coming back for the first time, and you tell the media you are expecting gold? It is just impossible!
I: You didn't have the confidence?
LD: It has nothing to do with confidence; I just didn't set that as a target.
Host commented that LD spent 2 hours analyzing LCWís play with his coaches before the final
I: You had played LCW for so many times, and should be very familiar with his play. So, why did you still need to do the analysis?
LD: I need to look at my own games, then LCWís games from 2008 up till the SF with DPY the night before. I have to emphasis that both of us need to accept the fact that we may just get silver. I think we need to have this mentality, while it doesnít mean I wouldn't go for the gold. When facing this 50/50 opponent, maybe even 60% for him, 40% for me, if you canít accept error and defeat, then you have set you expectation too high and placed too much pressure on your own.
I: The result of the Final came as a shock to us. We never expected such a sad ending! What were you thinking when LCW started to have the cramp?
LD: If it was 4 years ago, or even earlier, I would never have gone over the net to check on him. I would be thinking, I am having such a big advantage, why should I go over, he canít even stand up, I just have to try a bit more, and the gold will be mine. However, my feeling is not the same anymore!
LD: I believe LCW and I had gone through a lot, such as the expectation of our nations. From 2008, we faced each other many times. I still think he is my greatest opponent. A great opponent such as LCW could tell you that you have even higher potential. Every improvement he gains would set off your alarm that you must do better to compete. I am really thankful to have LCWís as an opponent, and thatís why I went over the net to check on him.
I: We watched that you went over the net to talk to LCW, but we didn't know what you two said to each other.
LD: He was having a cramp, and could only squat on the floor, so I thought I should also squat with him. I wanted to ask him how serious it was, because I had experienced the same during training before.
I: How was the feeling?
LD: With the cramp, you just have no control and can only squat down. Thatís why I asked LCW whether he was ok, was it very serious, and whether he needed any help.
I: How did he reply?
LD: He didn't say anything, but I could feel that he didn't want to give up. Of course, the cramp was giving him a very hard time.
LD: I felt very happy for LCW when everyone in the stadium was cheering him on to continue, everyone was calling his name. Even though I don't know how he felt, I think he should feel very happy at the moment. It was in a stadium in China, and it was quite an achievement for a player to gain support by so many fans from a different nation. His performance had conquered all the audience.
I: How did you feel (when all the audience was cheering LCW on)?
LD: If it was in the past, I would be thinking how could you guys cheer for my opponent? But not anymore, now I just felt happy for LCW.
I: After the tournament, a lot of media was talking about the about the air-con being turned off, and caused LCW to cramp. How do you feel about that?
LD: I was told by my friends that LCWís coach was complaining about the air-con. To me, we were playing on court, whether the air-con was turned off, and who turned it off, I didnít have any idea. I can only say that it was very hot, and created much pressure on our bodies. However, I must say that, no matter what happened, we were playing on even grounds!
I: You have competed with LCW all these years, and some people may think you had much better luck than him
LD: If you just look at records, then yes, maybe I did have better luck relatively. However, I was watching a TV program after OG, in which photos were shown and 2 teams competed to say who was in the photo. When LCWís photos came up, everyone could tell immediately. The response was even faster than when photos of other Chinese OG gold medalist were shown. To me, it meant LCW has succeeded, even though he has yet to take an OG gold, many people already know of him.
I: Is that your target as well (being well known)?
LD: Of course. When you get older, when your performance can never reach the peak again, when your next target or next gold medal is getting further away from you, I feel that being recognized and supported by others is important.
I: After the Final, audience watched you went up to the commentator platform and kissed your wife! How did you feel at the time?
LD: During the 2012 OG, I just felt the tremendous pressure. The team wanted me to win; the sponsors wanted me to win as all the advertisements had the winning pictures. I can understanding the sponsors were preparing for the advertising campaign after the OG, but it gave me tremendous pressure. I just started thinking of my family, they didnít ask for anything from me, didn't ask for any reward, they just wanted me to do well, just offered the simple support! So, I know even if I failed to win in OG, that special 4-5 persons on the audience platform would still give me the support, would still give me a hug! They were my family!
I: Winning gold in OG2012, could be considered as a peak of your career. What was your plan after that?
LD: First, I needed to set my next target, and found my own reason/drive for going forward in badminton, not just listened to general comments from others, such as continue till OG2016, it was very good for your career etc. To me, I really needed to find my own reason and the drive.
I: Was there a period after OG2012, in which you lost the sense of direction or lack of targets?
LD: I was looking, not really lack of targets. I didnít have any injury and I loved the game of badminton. If I continued to play, I needed to consider a lot of things; I might have to face even more difficulties than before. Every opponent I faced would want to beat me, so if I was not prepared and couldnít perform, it would not be acceptable to me. I was not a piece of white paper any more, and with the records of over 13 years of my career, if I lose to a Vietnamese player, a Japanese player, or a player from an emerging (for badminton) country, the media would have a lot to say, something like you are not the Super Dan any more, your era has past etc. All these I had to consider carefully.
I: So what had you decided?
LD: In the past, I was concerned about how many gold I could get, or whether I could surpass the achievements of great Chinese players of the past. I realized that I was closing on their records, so I hoped I could surpass them! But now, I think I need a different mentality / attitude!
I: Since when have you started thinking about your mentality / attitude?
LD: It would be when I had to get back into the team and started training. I had to think about what condition / state I should get back into the competition with. The training schedule was always there, it didn't change. But I, as a person, did change.
I: We have heard of comments which questioned Lin Danís reason for coming back, was it really for the love of badminton, or afraid of losing the sponsorship earnings?
LD: Reporters asked the same question during the WC media briefing. I think it was natural, and I must admit that I didn't want to lose the sponsorship earnings. But I think the more important point is that I didn't come back just for the earnings, or thinking how much more money I could get after getting one more gold. I think there must be something more important than that, there must be!
I: As a World Champion who already got so many golds, what could be more important for you?
LD: I think everyone would like to make a lot of money. But to me, the first point is if it is not supposed to be mine, I wouldnít think about it! The second point is that if you look back to OG2008, if you do a simple survey now, out of 50 people, I believe none can remember the names of 15 gold medalists. So, what is the value of such champions? Here I am not talking about their sponsorship earnings. I believe their value would be forgotten quickly. To themselves, or to the sports that they represent, these are not true values. To me, if there are a lot of fans wanting to see Lin Dan play, that is my value.
I: A lot of people have been guessing, Super Dan may want to change into Idol Dan! Just look at your dressing today, you are not like the regular athletes anymore.
LD: I think nowadays people also donít look at athletes as they used to be. I believe when an athlete stand in public, he is not only representing himself, but also the country. So, I think every athlete should present with the best appearance, be their best on court, this is a responsibility to themselves, to the team, and to the country.
I: To be honest, did you ever thing of changing your career after OG? We see that you published a book, appeared in many culture and lifestyle activities. People may think whether Lin Dan wants to get into the entertainment / culture sector.
LD: Never! It is very important to me that many people knew me through badminton. I am doing well in badminton, and I don't want to suddenly change into something that I am not ready for. This is very unwise, so I won't do it. Another point is this lifestyle dressing is something I like very much personally, but no matter how that changes, I wonít get away from badminton, because I love badminton!
I: I feel that your mentality has change a lot. In the past, you could get agitated during a match. When you think there was a misjudgment by the referee or lines judge, or other unexpected situation, you would argue about it.
LD: Sometimes things just canít be changed, and if that cannot be changed, I think there is no point dawdling on it and affect your own emotion even further. Just adjust your emotions for the better.
I: That is quite a change, and thatís why people think Lin Dan is much more matured.
LD: In the 13 years of my career, I have always been considered as the top. In that position, you would face the greatest challenges and risks! With these experiences, if I continue to play, I need to find the play style that fits me the best.
I: Now you are preparing for the National Games, but what happens after that? OG2016 etc., will Lin Dan continues to play?
LD: After the National Games, I will need to have very serious discussions with the team about how to go forward. We have a lot of issues in front of us. For example, talking about OG2016, the first issue is qualifying points! Now my world ranking is below 200, canít even participate in the Super Series. So, the team and I need to come up with a complete schedule.
I: Do you have a plan for the future, such as may be follow the team and become a coach?
LD: It is my wish to promote badminton; however, I have not really considered becoming a coach yet!
I: Now people call you Super Dan, some call you Idol Dan. What do you want people to call you in the future?
LD: Actually, I don't really like to be called Super Dan, just call me Lin Dan is ok!
Your first link is nothing more than more of the same mouthing off to the media by Malaysian officials regarding the same unsubstantiated allegation I've heard so often already.
Your second link is irrelevant because you haven't established the air conditioning was turned off in the first place to be turned back on. You repeating it a million more times isn't gonna make it any more relevant.
I've watched that LD - LCW match four times and it somehow gives me the feeling that LCW had already given up when 19-15 down; even after the first cramp, he was struggling with himself whether to continue playing. Facing what he thought was imminent defeat, LCW's mind was in distress and it finally showed in physical manifestation in the part of his body which was subjected to most stress, the quadriceps muscles (perhaps hamstrings too).
Despite winning the next two points, one with the luck of the net cord and the other by desperate reflex action to return LD's two successive smashes from where he practically stood. Then still trailing 19-17 and having to exchange multiple shots moving around the court with LD when another twitch of his quads probably reminded him of the uphill battle at which his lack of inner belief and willpower again took over, he capitulated the point and ultimately the match.
At risk of sounding hackneyed, LCW for the nth time defeated himself yet again. Needless to say, only his nemesis Lin Dan can do that to him. In conclusion, it's my humble belief that whether the A/C was switched off or not is not the tipping point causing his defeat but that he was already mentally defeated even before the match started. This despite the fact that his two coaches would most probably have tried to instill in him the belief that this is his best chance to beat a weakened,most vulnerable LD. Saying this to him might actually both raise his hope considerably and, at the same time, increase his pressure even more - thus putting him in limbo.
Of course, the above is purely my subjective conjecture. After watching how he demolished first WZM followed by Tommy and then, somewhat unexpectedly to me, struggled with DuPY, I had a vague sense that his self-confidence took a small beating as he seemed more relieved than elated at finally overcoming DuPY after three hard-fought, bruising sets. I've asked myself this question:if LCW didn't cramp, would he have won the match? I was sure he would after he took G1 but G2 changed all that...well, I'm sure more people than not will unhesitatingly answer in the negative.
There is this pattern in LCWís defeats by LD in the more recent major tournaments (WC2011, OG2012, WC2013), in which he took game 1 by a relative wide margin, lost game 2 by an even greater margin, then a very tight game 3.
I think what happened to LCW in game 2ís could be either one of two things:
1. A little drop in concentration, maybe a little sense of relieve, after gaining the advantage. 2. Starting to have the sense that he could really beat LD, and so put more pressure on himself.
No. 2 is more likely as you can see the same thing happened in the final points of game 3ís, when he made more unforced errors.
There is one interesting thing about LCW, which I rarely, if at all, see in other players. Sometimes, just to show his supreme confidence, when he believed the shuttle was going out, he would let it dropped behind his back without even turned to look at it.
I think it is just natural reaction, or human nature, that you would try looking at the shuttle to confirm it is out! Even LD, with his super confidence, would do that!
So, I believe LCW had to force himself not doing so, just to show his supreme confidence to his opponents. I believe that actually shows his lack of confidence. Unfortunately, more than a few times those shuttles ended up in, and LCW made a fool out of himself.
I am particularly impressed by LD's reflection on OG championship. The fact that people will soon forget most of those OG champions, even at that time hailed as heroes by the whole nation, is a harsh reality of most sports. And I think his pondering on "for what I am playing" may play an important role in his understanding of badminton and how he shaped/evolved his games.
It seems to me that everyone sort of won on this occasion"
LD won the match and looked liked a nice guy and good sportsman.
LCW showed great fighting spirit and his fans will blame the LYB for cheating LCW out of a straight sets win(AC scandal, drift change).
LYB and CBA still holds on to the MS single crown, which in my opinion is the most important title in terms of prestige and also they can say look the rest of the world is catching up as they only won 2 titles.
TSB and BAM can also use the AC Scandal as an excuse, and shift away attention from Malaysia again having very little impact in a WC outside of LCW.
Fans get to see LD and LCW play together again for the first time and again we see how much star power they have as people can talk about their match for 2 weeks after the event ... Amazing!