We look at the highs and lows of one of the greatest badminton celebrities, Lee Chong Wei, after he announced his retirement on Thursday.
(Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Lee Chong Wei's remarkable career came to an end on Thursday, making the game a wealth of unforgettable moments
Kuala Lumpur: Kuala Lumpur: Malaysian badminton star Lee Chong Wei announced his retirement on Thursday, ending an uneven career of highs and lows.
Here's a look at career highlights and moments that defined one of the best players of badminton:
Lee cheered when he reached the top of the world ranking for the first time at the age of 24 in 2006 and overtook his great rival Lin Dan of China. Lee would spend a total of 348 weeks as a world champion, including 199 from August 2008 to June 2012 – perhaps his best performance.
In August 2008, Lee reached the Olympic final in Beijing and hoped that he would take home the first Olympic gold medal in Malaysia. However, he was well defeated by Lin, who delighted home fans with a straight-game win. It set an unfortunate pattern for Lee, who also lost to his arch enemy in the 2012 final, and again missed in the 2016 decision – this time to China Chen Long. Lee was also second in the three world championship finals – against Lin in 2011 and 2013, and Chen in 2015 – and is retiring without winning one of the two biggest prizes in the sport.
Lee & # 39; s career reached its low point in 2014, when he tested positive for a prohibited anti-inflammatory at the world championships. Badminton authorities eventually accepted his statement that he accidentally took the drug during stem cell treatment for a thigh injury. But the incident kept him out of the game for eight months and sent him down the world ranking.
A patchy season for Lee turned into a disaster last year when he was diagnosed with early-stage nasal cancer in July. After intensive treatment in Taiwan, Lee resumed training in January. However, he missed a return to full fitness and, hoping to reach next year's Olympics, Lee announced tears on Thursday.
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