Fastest Badminton Smashes Ever Recorded

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A badminton player playing a drop shot

Racket sports are some of the fastest sports in the world, none more faster than badminton. The tennis serve is routinely held up as a very fast shot with the world record for the fastest tennis serve recorded by Sam Groth at 263 km/h (164 mph). However, with many badminton smashes routinely breaking this record it is a reminder of the unbelievable speed a badminton player can generate when playing a smash.

Smashing the Record Books

The Guinness World Records recognises two records for the fastest badminton smash ever hit, the fastest badminton smashthe fastest badminton smash in competition

Having said this, The Guinnes World Records for the fastest badminton smash in competition is a little out of date. Let’s look at the real record smashes!

The Fastest Badminton Smash

The fastest ever recorded badminton smash was achieved by the Indian Satwiksairaj Rankireddy on 14th April 2023 at Yonex Co., Ltd in Soka Japan, where he managed to beat the previous record of 493 km/h (306 mph), set in 2013 by Tan Boon Heong, by hitting a blistering fast 565 km/h (351.07 mph), breaking the 500 km/h barrier.

Yonex, using their NANOFLARE 1000 Z, brought together Satwiksairaj Rankireddy (IND), Tan Pearly (MAS) (now the fastest female smash ever) and other top professionals to specifically break the previous Guinness World Record. 

These speeds are almost incomprehensible, but they are achieved under specially controlled test conditions designed to specifically break these records. So what are the fastest smashes ever hit in competitions? Here are the top 5 fastest badminton smashes hit under competition circumstances.

Top 5 Fastest Smashes at Competitions

5) Kunlavut Vitidsarn (THA) 419 km/h (260 mph) - Vs Wang Tzu Wei (TPE) Singapore Open 2023

Kunlavut Vitidsarn is a Thai men’s singles player who won the gold medal at the 2023 World Championships. He is currently ranked 8th in the world but at his peak was ranked No. 3 in the world. 

It was in the Round of 32 in 2023 Singapore Open, that Kunlavut Vitidsarn hit a scorching smash of 419km/h against Wang Tzu Wei (TPE) to win the rally.

Not only was the blistering smash a winner, but it came at the end of a long rally in the third game, at 26-26! Vitidsarn’s smash took the score to 27-26, and Vitidsarn only needed one more rally to clinch the game 28-26 and therefore the match.

Vitidsarn went on to reach the semi-final but retired in the third set due to a shoulder injury against the eventual winner, Anthony Sinisuka Ginting (INA).

Kunlavut Vitidsarn achieved this smash using the Yonex Astrox 88D Pro.

4) Lakshya Sen (IND) 420 km/h (261 mph) - Vs Li Shifeng (CHN) Canada Open 2023

Lakshya Sen is an Indian men’s singles player who won the gold medal at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. He is currently ranked 14th in the world but at his peak, he was ranked No. 6 in the world. 

Sen hit this bullet of a smash at in the 2023 Canada Open Super Series 500 tournament at the Markin-MacPhail Centre, WinSport in Calgary.

The fourth fastest smash was hit in the Men’s Singles Final. The cross-court smash was hit at 6-5 in the first game clocking in at 420 km/h.

Sen went on to win the final 2-0, 21-18, and 22-20, giving him his 4th BWF World Tour title. This was his first and only title in 2023.

Lakshya Sen achieved this smash using the Yonex NanoFlare 1000 Z.

3) Mads Pieler Kolding (Danish) - 426 km/h (265 mph) 2017 Badminton Premier League

The record for fastest smash in a match ever played was previously this lightning fast smash of 426 km/h, smashing the previous record of 408 km/h by 18 km/h at the time. This rocket was produced by the Danish international doubles player, Mads Pieler Kolding in a match for the Chennai Smashes with his partner Chris Adcock in the 2017 Premier Badminton League against Ivanov/Sozonov of the Delhi Acers. 

Mads Pieler Kolding, now retired, was World Number 4 at his highest ranking with his partner Mads Conrad-Petersen. One of the tallest badminton players around, Mads Pieler Kolding was a massive 2.05 m (6 ft 9 in). As well as having the fastest smash on record, Mads Pieler Kolding other accolades include winning the 2016 European Championship and being part the Danish National team which won the 2016 Thomas Cup.

2) Prannoy HS (IND) 428 km/h (266 mph) - Vs Viktor Axelsen (DEN) Japan Open 2023

The second India to make our list of fastest-ever smashes, Prannoy Haseena Sunil Kumar is an Indian men’s singles player who won the bronze medals at the 2022 Asian Games and at the 2023 World Championships. He is currently ranked 9th in the world but at his peak was ranked No. 6 in the world.

Prannoy HS hit a smash that would have broken the previous record set by Mads Pieler Kolding if it wasn’t for our number-one smasher breaking that record only a week earlier!

Now this lightning-fast smash of 428 km/h has to settle for No. 2. Prannoy hit his smash in the Men’s Singles Quarterfinals during the 2023 Japan Open at the Yoyogi National Gymnasium in Tokyo.

Prannoy hit this smash against Viktor Axelsen when he was 13-17 down in the first game. It was a definite turning point in the game as Prannoy then went on to win the following three points bringing the game back to 17-17. Prannoy then went on to take the first game 21-19.

However, this massive smash wasn’t enough for Prannoy as Axelsen went onto win the match 2-1, taking the third game easily 21-8. Axelsen went on to win the 2023 Japan Open, comfortably winning the final 21-7 and 21-18 against Jonatan Christie (INA).

Prannoy achieved this smash using the Mizuno JPX Reserve edition.

1) Satwiksairaj Rankireddy (IND) 500 km/h (311 mph) - Vs Hoki/Kobay (JPN) Korea Open 2023

The Fastest Smash at competitions was hit by none other than the record-smashing Satwiksairaj Rankireddy! Not only does he hold the record for the Fastest Badminton Smash Ever, but also the fastest smash during open play.

Incredibly, Rankireddy managed to hit a smash of 500 km/h, blowing all the other smashes on this list out of the water!

Satwiksairaj Rankireddy is an Indian men’s doubles player and is one of the best Indian players of all time with his partner, Chirag Shetty, they are the only Indian doubles pair to become the world number 1. They are also the only Indian pair to win a BWF World Tour 1000 series, and they also became the first Indians to win a gold at the Asian games.

Rankireddy and Shetty are currently World No.1 (as of 21 May 2024).

Rankireddy hit this record-breaking smash of 500 km\h in the Men’s Doubles Quarterfinals during the 2023 Korea Open at the Jinnam Stadium in Yeosu, South Korea.

Rankireddy hit this smash against Hoki and Kobay (JPN) at 12-6 in the first game. Rankireddy and Shetty went on to win the Quarterfinals against Hoki and Kobay relatively comfortably, 21-14, 21-17.

Rankireddy and Shetty then went on to win the 2023 Korea Open, beating Alfian and Ardianto 17-21, 21-13, 21-14. 

Rankireddy achieved this smash using the Yonex Duora Z Strike.

The fastest smashes in badminton history are quite amazing. The players who hit these smashes are incredibly talented and skilled. It is truly exciting to watch these smashes in action. I encourage you to check out some of these videos online and see for yourself how amazing these smashes are. But I hope more than anything that this article has got you excited, like it has me, to get out and play badminton and hit some speedy smashes yourself. Get out, play badminton and “smash it”.

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