Chinese superstar Lin Dan, hailed as one of the greatest shuttler to have graced the sport, announced his retirement at the age of 36.

In doing so, the two-time Olympic champion also gave up on his dreams to feature in a fifth Olympics that was pushed to 2021 due to the coronavirus.

'Super Dan' hung up his racquet having won every accolade the sport has to offer, including the Olympic Games, World Championships, Thomas Cup, Sudirman Cup, Super Series Finals, All England Championships, Asian Games and Asian Championships.

The southpaw even won the Badminton World Cup twice, which meant he completed the badminton 'Super Grand Slam' by the age of 28 and remains the only player to achieve this feat.

Lin Dan had haboured serious hopes of qualifying for Tokyo Olympics, but age and injuries had taken their toll and he made the decision to call it quits on Saturday.

“From 2000 to 2020, after 20 years, I have to say goodbye to the national team. It is very difficult to say it out. My physical capabilities and injuries won’t let me fight with my teammates anymore,” Lin Dan said on Chinese social media site Weibo.

The five-time world champion was understood to have submitted his resignation a few days ago and the Chinese Badminton Association accepted it after taking into consideration his struggles with injuries.

Lee Chong Wei also paid tribute to his long-time on-court nemesis and friend on social media.

“We knew this day would arrive, heavy moments of our lives, you pulled down the curtain gracefully, you were king where we fought so proudly, you final wave all four disappear, within the hush of silent tear,” said the Malaysian.

We knew this day would arrive, Heavy moment of our lives; You pulled down the curtain gracefully, You were king where we fought so proudly; Your final wave all four disappear, Within the hush of silent tear. 这一天终于还是到来了 我退役一年后 你也选择挂拍 不惊讶 不遗憾 球场上的巅峰之战 我们挥洒的汗水和泪水 记录着无悔青春 祝福你 我最伟大的对手 林丹

A post shared by Datuk Wira Lee Chong Wei (@leechongweiofficial) on

Throughout his trophy-laden career, Lin Dan notched 666 victories and 28 of them were at the expense of Lee, notably at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics final as well as the 2011 and 2013 World Championships final.

Lin Dan was also a cult figure among Malaysian fans and would get the loudest cheers along with Lee when both men featured here.

Lin Dan completed his sweep of every major title when he beat Lee in the 2017 Malaysia Open, and went on to win it again in 2019.