Malaysia’s number one badminton player Datuk Lee Chong Wei has decided to hang up his badminton racquet after almost 2 decade of successful career that boasted 69 singles titles and 3 Olympic silver medals.
During a press conference at the Menara KBS here on Thursday (13th June), the 36-year-old sportsman has officially announced his retirement from professional badminton.
Also present at the news conference were Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman, his deputy Steven Sim and Badminton Association of Malaysia president Datuk Seri Norza Zakaria.
The announcement didn’t come as a surprise, especially after Lee was diagnosed with a nose cancer in July last year. Even though he has since made recovery, the doctor advised him to ease off in his athletic pursuits in order to avoid a relapse of the nose cancer.
Thank You, Datuk Lee ❤️
— BAM (@BA_Malaysia) June 13, 2019
“It’s hard for me to announce that I am retiring. I have discussed this with my family, but with a heavy heart I have to announce that I am retiring as health is more important,” Lee said as quoted by Fox Sports Asia.
“My actual plan was to retire next year after Olympics, but after having discussions with my family and doctors, I have made this decision. It’s not easy to wear the Malaysian jersey and I am very proud of my achievement. I hope Malaysia can win our first Olympic gold medal which is also my dream, next year.”
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CULTRA presented by Salomon . This man deserves a standing ovation not only from Malaysia, but from the whole world for his contribution to sports as a whole. . He waved our beloved Jalur Gemilang flag around the globe, and made all of us proud with his greatness in Badminton. . A True National Hero of Malaysia. You will be missed Dato Lee Chong Wei. . Thank you for making all of us proud. 🇲🇾 . #cameronultra #cultra2019 #cultra #cameronultratrail #ultramarathon #ultratrail #salomonMY #timetoplay #cultraxsalomon #salomon #utmb #leechongwei #badminton
“I want to thank every people who helped me along the way. Thank you to coach Misbun (Sidek) and all the coaches that helped to train me,” he concluded.
Syed Saddiq has also revealed that Lee would be nominated as the next Chef De Mission for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.