Chong Wei out of All England with freak injury

Badminton world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei will miss next month's All England Championships, having been ruled out due to injury. Lee lamented that his injury "could have been avoided" had the mats been replaced at his behest.
Badminton world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei will miss next month's All England Championships, having been ruled out due to injury. Lee lamented that his injury "could have been avoided" had the mats been replaced at his behest.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

KUALA LUMPUR • Badminton world No. 1 Lee Chong Wei was left fuming after an injury at Malaysia's new training centre cost him what may have been his last shot at the All England Championship, reports said yesterday.

The 34-year-old, who was gunning for his fourth title at the prestigious tournament next month, will be out for weeks after he slipped and fell at the new Academy Badminton Malaysia on Saturday.

Lee, who has signalled he may retire this year, tore a medial collateral ligament in his left knee in the incident, the Star newspaper reported yesterday.

"This injury could have been avoided," he was reported as saying.

Lee said he had complained about the new centre's slippery court mats but "nothing was done".

The Malaysia team only moved to their new national training centre in the Bukit Kiara suburb of Kuala Lumpur a week ago.

"My first thought was I didn't want to end my career like this," he said.

The 2016 Olympic silver medallist had said last month that he hoped to win this year's World Championships in August before retiring.

"He was so fired up to train after the Lunar New Year celebrations," said Malaysia's national coach Hendrawan.

"I sympathise with him because he has not played for some time and has been preparing well and this had to happen."

Meanwhile the Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) apologised and said the slippery mats had been replaced.

"I'm sorry that Chong Wei is injured... Like everyone else, we would like to see him win at the All England," BAM general manager Lawrence Chew was quoted as saying by the Star. "We're taking all measures possible to make sure that no one else gets hurt at the centre."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 08, 2017, with the headline 'Chong Wei out of All England with freak injury'. Print Edition | Subscribe