National badminton player Datuk Lee Chong Wei was seen sobbing in an emotional retirement announcement at the Ministry of Youth and Sports in Putrajaya. PIX: NOOREEZA HASHIM / MalaysiaGazette / 13 JUNE 2019
National badminton player Datuk Lee Chong Wei was seen sobbing in an emotional retirement announcement at the Ministry of Youth and Sports in Putrajaya. PIX: NOOREEZA HASHIM / MalaysiaGazette / 13 JUNE 2019

By Mohd Zaini Samsu Hadi

PUTRAJAYA – Datuk Lee Chong Wei announced his retirement from the arena of badminton after being involved in the sport for 19 years.

The 37-year old national badminton champ made the decision as he would like to focus on his health.

The announcement to hang his racquet was made in a special press conference at the Ministry of Youth and Sports today.

He was seen sobbing in the emotional announcement.

According to the former world number one badminton player, it was the hardest decision that he had ever made. However, after long thoughts, including getting the feedback from his wife, Datin Wong Mew Choo, he finally gave in.

“I went to Taiwan last April and the doctors said that it would not be suitable for me to continue with high intensity training.

“Therefore, upon my return, I took a month to think about that before making the decision to meet the Minister of Youth and Sports (Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman) and the President of BAM (Datuk Seri Mohamad Norza Zakaria) to get their opinion.

“I’ve finally decided to hang my racquet after the Aidilfitri celebrations. It is a heavy decision for me, but my health issues are more important,” he said.

Chong Wei was accompanied by Syed Saddiq, Norza and the Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports Steven Sim Chee Keong.

Meanwhile, Syed Saddiq was seen to console Chong Wei several times who was choked in his tears.

Besides the collection of three silvers in the Olympics (2008, 2012 and 2016) and emerged as first runner-up in world championships (2011, 2013 and 2015), Chong Wei juga is also the only player who won the most Super Series with a total of 46 titles.

Speculations on his retirement were made when Chong Wei did not attend his trainings since April after his follow-up treatment in Taiwan. -MalaysiaGazette

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