Head and Shoulders Above the Rest: The Story of Badminton Star Tai Tzu-Ying

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The world of sports is full of stiff competitions and stringent rules and reaching to the top in sports is more challenging with everyone racing for victory.

However, there are a few sportspersons whose dedication, hard work, perseverance and optimism have helped reach perfection in their respective fields. Taiwanese badminton star Tai Tzu-Ying who became world’s number 1 at age 22 is one such sports star whose story is sure to inspire other ambitious sports persons. We believe her journey will truly inspire everyone with encouraging ideas and visions. Here is what you need to know about her.

She was born in 1994 to fire fighter Tai Nan-Kai, Tai Tzu-Ying started playing with the racket when she was just 9 years old. Her father, who was also the Director at the District Badminton Committee, guided her accordingly together with the help of his friends. She was able to master even some difficult strokes with ease. The result: Tai Tzu-Ying began her international career at 15 and entered the Taiwanese ranking competition when she was just 16 years and 6 months old. She also became the world’s youngest player to participate in the Taiwanese First National Division.

There were some hurdles though in her career at the beginning. But her hard work and dedication towards the game were never dwindling. She was runner-up in her first international game – the Vietnam Open. She lost the quarter finals in the National Games held at Kaohsiung City; and also lost the finals in the Asian Youth Badminton Tournament held at Malaysia in 2009.

But her unwavering determination and confidence helped her reach better positions in the next matches. She won bronze and silver medals at the East Asian Games where she represented Chinese Taipei. This gave her enough boost to win the Super Series for the first time at the Japan Open thus becoming the youngest player to win the Super Series.

As a kid, Tai was always becoming a sportswoman one day and was always enjoying playing her favourite sport. For her father and people who know her very closely, she totally seemed to be in love with badminton. As a student, she is known to be always willing to excel in studies and life. She also loves watching her favourites Doraemon and SpongeBob SquarePants as any other kid. She is a bundle of joy and is always seen smiling spreading joy and cheerfulness around her. When she is not practicing Badminton, she likes to spend some quality time with her family and loves music.

Once she is in the arena, she is seen as a tough contender by her opponents. One of her earlier achievements include winning the Yonex Chinese Taipei Open in 2012 where she won against Indonesian badminton player Lindaweni Fanetri. But soon the next year, in 2013, she experienced some hurdles in her career with her loss to the South Korean Sung Ji-Hyun at the Chinese Taipei Open. However, she avenged by defeating her in the same year at the BWF Super Series Masters Finals. However, she lost the finals to Li Xuerui.

While she lost some games and won in other tournaments, Tai is on a winning spree since 2016 and has won over a number of games and the year 2014 seems to be the most successful year in her career as she excelled at the Hong Kong Open, Super Series Finals in Dubai and also grabbed a gold at the Chinese Taipei. She’s on the top of the list for over 65 consecutive weeks since December 2016.

Achieving such success constantly is almost impossible and very challenging for many, but Tai proved that firm will and hard work will help the contenders to achieve the top position whether in sports, or in life.