It’s pretty obvious that Lin Dan is one of, if not the best badminton player of all time. Taufik is also a star in his generations. Although Lin Dan has beaten Taufik more times than Taufik has beaten him, I believe that Taufik has the better racket skill of the two.
In terms of net play, both players are pristine. However, Lin Dan gets his shot quality from taking the bird very early at the net. Taufik however doesn’t take the bird as early but is still able to produce tumbling net shots consistently. Although Lin Dan still has really good net skills, his is more due to his positioning rather than his actual swing. Because of this I think Taufik wins in this division in terms of racket handling.
Then there are the overhead strokes. Although LD has the advantage of being a lefty so his shots are faster, I found it to be interesting that, although Taufik is not as fit as LD, he is able to generate more power than LD. This is largely due to Taufik’s sixth sense in timing and how he always knows when and how to swing in order to generate the maximum power. Although LD’s smashes and clears are sharp, it seems as though his swing takes a bit more effort than Taufik’s and because this is solely based on racket skill/swing, I think Taufik takes this one as well.
Needless to say that head to head LD would take out Taufik 9/10 times and that he is the better player. However, it terms of pure racket skill, I believe Taufik has more talent in this area. In addition, LD’s gift seems to be his explosive movement and reaction, whereas Taufik’s gift seems to be more geared towards his instinct in timing of his swing. Because of this, I believe Taufik’s racket skill alone is greater than LD’s.