Tien Minh Nguyen is a badminton player who hails from Vietnam. Born on February 12, 1983 in Ho Chi Minh city, the 35 year is a well known name name in the circuit of male singles badminton, with a World Championship bronze medal in his name back in 2013.
The spark of playing badminton was ignited in the mind of Nguyen by his father when he was all of 10 years old. He only wanted to play it to have a healthy body. However, his love for the game grew along the years and badminton became a passion for him. He decided to take his passion to the next level in high school.
He became a professional in 1997 when he represented his district in the city championships. He made it to the national team in 2000 after constantly good performances in the domestic circuit following which his international debut came in 2001.
Rise to Glory
Right from his early days in international badminton, Nguyen was a bright prospect for Vietnamese badminton, which is not known to produce quality shuttlers. Owing to the poor condition of badminton in Vietnam, Nguyen wasn’t paid well, but his determination to be at the top never died down.
In 2002, aged 19, Nguyen defeated a long time national champion and won gold. By the age of 26, he had done more than enough by the standards of Vietnamese badminton. He represented his country at the Olympics, thus becoming the first Vietnamese to do so. He further won the Vietnam and Malaysia Satellite tournaments in 2008. He was constantly listed in the top 10 Vietnamese players for many years. He soon achieved a career high ranking of 4 in 2010.
His real moment of glory came in 2013 when he won the bronze medal in the World Championships held in Guangzhou, China. Though he lost the semi-finals, he became a national hero, resulting in being nominated for an Order of labour, 2nd class by the Government of Vietnam.
Nguyen performed exceedingly well for a majority part of his career. He played against top class players like Lin Dan and Lee Chong Wei and always gave them a stiff competition. However his career graph soon started declining due to his age. After playing at the topmost level for 14-15 years, age started taking a toll on his body. His rankings dropped considerably and he was no longer feared.
However, his love and determination for the game never died and he never gave up. He soon started playing mixed doubles with his partner and wife Vu Thi Trang. He improved his rankings from a career low of 107 and now ranks 47th in men’s singles.
Even at the age of 35, Nguyen has shown that class is permanent. He is the reason behind the sudden increase of shuttlers from vietnam. Also, he has actively promoted the sports along with many other sports played there. With 428 career wins and a ranking of 47th, Tien Minh nguyen might no longer be in the top bracket of shuttlers but the veteran is still capable of defeating shuttlers with his depth touches and quirky feet movements.