KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 11 — The outcome of the World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland from Aug 21 to 27, is expected to serve as a decisive factor to the determine the future of Datuk Lee Chong Wei’s career in the badminton arena.
National singles coach Hendrawan said based on his discussion with Chong Wei, the outcome of the World Championship will be the turning point to determine the road map of the world number one’s future.
Hendrawan however, said whether Chong Wei wished to continue playing or retire, would solely be based on Chong Wei’s decision.
“Yes, he (Chong Wei) had expressed his desire to retire after the Rio Olympics in Brazil last year as he had gone ‘all-out’ to capture the elusive gold medal. I have asked him whether the desire was still there for him to continue.
“If he still has the desire and willing to continue, he can. I still remember Chong Wei saying his target is the World Championships this year. At that point I said it was not impossible because it is only one year.
“Need not think of the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. If he wins in Scotland, I feel all doubts will be eliminated,” he said at the Sime Darby Convention Centre in Bukit Kiara, here.
Hendrawan said just like the Olympics, Chong Wei is also in pursuit of the elusive title in the World Championships after having finished second in London (2011), Guangzhou (2013) and Jakarta (2015) plus a bronze in Anaheim, United States in (2005).
The coach said Chong Wei had initially expressed his intention to retire because he was tired but the situation has changed completely since Chong Wei is oozing with confidence again and the pressure is off his shoulder.
“To be honest, Chong Wei had asked me why I had decided to quit badminton and I said it was due to injury. Secondly there was no desire to continue playing in the Thomas Cup and World Championships.
“We have discussed about retirement but as long the drive, desire and dream to win titles is still there, we must continue. But if there is no desire to continue and there are no targets to achieve, it will be difficult to continue,” said the former Indonesian ace who won the men’s singles title at the World Championships in Seville, Spain, back in 2001.
Hendrawan said before the World Championships, Chong Wei has targeted the All England from (March 7-12), Indian Open (March 28-April 2), Malaysian Open (April 4-9) and Indonesian Open (June 13-18). — Bernama