Smash hits! Malaysian and Indian badminton players set world records for fastest shots
Two Asian badminton players have smashed their way to Guinness World Records for the fastest male and female hits.
Malaysian Pearly Tan’s smash was recorded at 438kmh, while India’s Satwiksairaj Rankireddy’s was 565kmh, surpassing the previous record of 493kmh set in 2013 by Malaysian former world No.1 Tan Boon Heong.
Both smashes were faster than the top speed of a Formula One car (the record is 372.6kmh) and tennis serve (263kmh).
According to the International Olympic Committee, both Tan and Rankireddy’s attempts were conducted under controlled conditions at the Yonex Tokyo Factory in Saitama, Japan, on April 14.
Yonex explained on its website that it measured the speed of the smashes by capturing the moments of impact using a high-speed camera.
“The instant velocity of the shuttlecock after the impact was then calculated from the photographic recording,” it said.
The results were then verified by judges from the Guinness World Records.
Many badminton fans took to social media to congratulate the duo on the phenomenal accomplishment.
“Who wants to see both the fastest male and female badminton players play... That’ll be fun to watch (like) ballistic missiles firing on the opponents,” wrote a commentator with the Instagram handle badfan, after the Badminton World Federation (BWF) uploaded a post about the duo’s achievement on its Instagram on Wednesday.
The Badminton Association of Malaysia also uploaded a Facebook post of Tan’s “incredible” achievement.
User Lim Lian Cheoo said on Facebook this demonstrated that Tan was a “real pearl of strength and talent” with more record waiting to be broken by her, while Siti Hajar Ismail urged the 23-year-old to “keep up the great work.”
“Winning this is a remarkable human feat,” said another Facebook user, Abdul Rahman Mohd Rani.
Meanwhile, Rankireddy posted the achievement on his Instagram account and the kudos came almost as fast as his smashes.
“Heartiest congratulations bro on breaking the decade old record to clock the fastest smash ever recorded in the history of world Badminton,” wrote Sanjay Kaul.
“Should hold you in good stead in the years to come especially at the forthcoming 2024 Paris Olympics where you can put it to good use.”
Another user, Seshu Brundavanam, said Rankireddy has made all of India proud while Dhanashri Narule wished him many more wins ahead.
Tan and her partner Thinaah Muralitharan are currently the 11th-ranked women’s pairing in BWF’s world ranking, while Rankireddy and his partner Chirag Shetty are the third-best men’s pair.
In June, Rankireddy and Shetty defeated Malaysia’s world champions Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik 21-17, 21-18 to clinch India’s first BWF Super 1000 doubles success.