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Badminton legend Lee Chong Wei announces retirement

IANS  |  Putrajaya (Malaysia) 

Malaysian shuttler and three-times Olympic silver medalist Wei announced his retirement from citing health reasons on Thursday, ending 19 years of professional career since his debut in 2000.

"I would like to announce that I'm retiring from the sport after 19 years," Lee said at a press conference at the Ministry here.

The decision was a difficult one, and one he has struggled with, Lee told

Ultimately he and his family decided that retirement was the best course following he suffered last year, reports

The decision came following doctors' suggestion to Lee to take more rest instead of training to return to competitions.

The 36-year-old chocked many times as he spoke. He thanked all Malaysians for their support, specifically naming the Association of (BAM).

Asked if he would consider coaching for the national team, Lee said he would prioritize his recovery before discussing it with BAM but added: "If needs my help, 100 percent I will help."

Lee was first diagnosed with early stage last year but returned to training later as he tried to make it to the Tokyo Games in 2020.

Although he didn't win Malaysia's first Olympic goal or a world champion title, the three-time Olympic silver medalist left the game as a giant, having held the World No. 1 spot for six consecutive years, amassing a total of 705 wins and 69 titles.

Lee's epic competition with of has become legend of the sports, with 40 matches throughout the career including three at the

"and in who are always competing, we have and Wei in badminton," he said. "If there's no Lin Dan, there will not be the Wei today," he told Xinhua.

Lee spoke highly for his nemesis and wished the 35-year-old Lin all the best in the quest for the Tokyo "We may no longer be opponents, but we are still good friends. I am looking forward to seeing him play at the Tokyo Olympics," he said.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, June 13 2019. 17:46 IST