Monday, July 7, 2014

Injured Chong Wei may also miss World Championships

KUALA LUMPUR: World No. 1 Lee Chong Wei’s participation in the World Championships in Copenhagen from Aug 15-20 now hangs in the balance.

On Friday, Chong Wei announced that he would not defend his men’s singles title at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games from July 23-Aug 3 after aggravating his thigh injury.

On Saturday, he underwent a medical procedure, where stem cells were injected into the affected area, and national chief coach Rashid Sidek confirmed that Chong Wei may take a longer time than expected to recover.

“The injury is quite serious and we are not sure how long it will take for him to get back on his feet. It takes a while for sports injuries to heal,” said Rashid.

Rashid said it was unfortunate that Chong Wei’s old injury had acted up again – two weeks before the Games and just a month before the World Championships.

“He was sad to give up the chance of winning the Commonwealth Games title for the third time in a row,” said Rashid.

“This is also probably Chong Wei’s best chance to win at the World Championships as China’s Lin Dan failed to qualify while Chen Long has not been in consistent form.

“Chong Wei has been carrying the injury even before the Thomas Cup Finals (in New Delhi in May). It became worse at last month’s Japan and Indonesian Opens and during training recently.

“Chong Wei doesn’t like to show the pain of his injuries. He is mentally strong.

“The hectic schedule has taken its toll on Chong Wei. This year alone, he has been slated for about 16 tournaments. He has been playing regularly and with consistently good results.

“He is tired and needs a break. Hopefully, he will have a good rest now and be ready for the World Championships.”

With Chong Wei out of the Games, Liew Daren is now tipped to be the replacement. The other two in the running are Goh Soon Huat and Iskandar Zulkarnain Zainuddin.

“We have not find a replacement for Chong Wei yet. The Badminton Association of Malaysia will make a decision. We, the coaches, do not have any say in deciding on this matter,” said Rashid.

The others in the team for the Games are Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong, Chan Peng Soon, Tee Jing Yi, Woon Khe Wei-Vivian Hoo and Lim Yin Loo. Malaysia won four badminton golds at the last Games in New Delhi in 2010.

by Rajes Paul - The Star

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