Viktor Axelsen of Denmark is the current world number one in men’s singles. He is fourth in total weeks at number one and can surpass Chen Long of China in 2022. He has also been year-end number one twice (2017, 2021).
Axelsen won the BWF World Championships in 2017, beating the legendary Lin Dan in the final. Additionally, he took home the gold medal at the 2020 Summer Olympics, defeating Chen, the 2016 Olympic badminton men’s singles gold medalist.
He claimed his first international senior title at the age of 16, winning the men’s singles event at the Cyprus International in 2010. He has since added 19 more men’s singles crowns in various grade levels of sanctioned BWF tournaments.
The calendar year of 2021 has been Axelsen’s most fruitful. Aside from the Olympic gold medal, he was able to grab six BWF World Tour men’s singles diadems, including the 2021 BWF World Tour Finals.
Other men’s singles first place trophies the 28-year-old have copped include the Thomas Cup (2016) and European Championships (2016, 2018).