Badminton: Lee Chong Wei confirms that he will play until 2016 Olympics

World No. 1 badminton player Lee Chong Wei confirmed on Tuesday that he intends to persevere until the 2016 Olympics, making it a fourth consecutive Games for the Malaysian.

While Lee has previously hinted that he could follow rival Lin Dan of China into retirement, Lee said he has been persuaded to continue by Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

He said: "I still want to win a medal for Malaysia, no matter what medal it is. It would be my fourth Olympics by then, and it's very tough, but I will persevere."

Lee, who is the men's singles top seed at this week's OUE Singapore Open, took time to meet some of Singapore's young budding badminton players at a special dinner organised at the Mandarin Orchard on Tuesday.

The Malaysian mingled with the group of 22 players from the National Intermediate Squad and Singapore Sports School, signing autographs and taking photos with the aspiring shuttlers.

Said Lee, who just claimed the India Open title last week: "It's been a long time since I visited Singapore. The last time I played here was in 2010. I want to be in my best form here and win my fourth title of the year here."

The exclusive meet and greet was presented by Koh Brothers, whose managing director and group chief executive officer Francis Koh is also vice-president of the Singapore Badminton Association.

He said: "By hosting this dinner date, we hope to inspire our next generation of stars by first instilling a passion for badminton. It is our wish that after this meeting, these young badminton enthusiasts will be inspired and emulate Chong Wei's dedication and persevering spirit in his climb to reach the top."

Lee is the top seed and with the second to fourth seeds having withdrawn, is the hot favourite to take the title. He plays his opening match on Wednesday against Hong Kong's Wei Nan.