Thursday, June 23, 2011

Lee Chong Wei

Datuk Lee Chong Wei (born October 21, 1982 in Georgetown, Penang) is a professional badminton player from Malaysia who resides in Bukit Mertajam. Lee won the silver medal in the 2008 Olympic Games, thus becoming the first Malaysian to reach the final of the men's singles event and ending Malaysia's Olympic medal drought since the 1996 Games. This achievement also earned him the title Datuk, and a description by Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak as a national hero. As a singles player, Lee was ranked first worldwide on August 21, 2008. He is the third Malaysian men's singles shuttler after Rashid Sidek and Roslin Hashim to achieve such a ranking (since official rankings were first kept in the 1980s), and is the only Malaysian shuttler to hold the ranking for more than two weeks. Despite his number 1 status since 2008, Lee is still searching for his first Olympic Games, World Championship and Asian Games titles. Lee picked up only one title in 2002 and 2003, the major achievement being, reaching the final of the 2003 Malaysia Open, his first final of a major tournament, where was defeated by Chen Hong of China. Lee then secured two titles in 2004, the Malaysia Open and Chinese Taipei Open. Lee gained a spot for 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. In his first Olympics appearance, Lee defeated Ng Wei of Hong Kong in the first round. His journey ended in the second round when he was beaten by Chen Hong. Lee then bagged another two titles in 2005, his second Malaysia Open title and Denmark Open. Lee bagged bronze in his first appearance in the world meet, the 2005 World Championships after losing to eventual winner Taufik Hidayat in the semifinal.

Lee kicked off year 2008 in success, capturing his fourth Malaysia Open title in five years. However, Lee only captured his second title of the year in Singapore Open, also the final tournament in his pre-Olympic preparations, just after five tournaments he took part, in Korea Open; All England Open; Swiss Open; Badminton Asia Championships; and Thomas Cup in Jakarta, Indonesia where Lee helped Malaysia advanced through to the semifinal where he defeated Lin Dan to give Malaysia a 1–0 lead in its clash with defending champion China. However, Malaysia eventually lost 2–3 due to the defeat of its first doubles team in the vital final match. In the 2008 Olympic Games, Lee was given a bye in the first round. He cruised to straight game victories over Ronald Susilo in the second round, KÄ™stutis Navickas in the third round, and Sony Dwi Kuncoro in the quarterfinals. He had a scare in the semifinals where Lee Hyun-il gave him a tough fight, but eventually Chong Wei was able to beat the South Korean and reach the final. However, it was a one-sided final, as Lee was completely outplayed by Lin Dan and salvaged only 20 points, losing 12–21, 8–21. He came second place overall. Lee started 2009 season with his fifth Malaysia Open title. He failed to secure his first Korea Open and All England Open title despite marching into the final. However, he secured his second title of the year in the Swiss Open which was held in Basel, defeating Lin Dan in straight sets and marking his first win in the finals against the Chinese opponent outside home turf. Next, Lee surprisingly was defeated by Chen Long of China in the India Open. He cited that the loss was due to food poisoning and insisted the authorities to improve the conditions before the World Championships. In May, Lee helped Malaysia reached the semi-finals of the Sudirman Cup, the first in national history, despite his unbeaten record in the tournament being blown by Lin Dan. He bagged another two titles in June, the Indonesia Open, and the Malaysia Open Grand Prix Gold, despite failing to defend his Singapore Open title when he was surprised by Nguyen Tien Minh in the second round. Lee kicks off second half of the season with defeat to Sony Dwi Kuncoro in the world meets, but recovery to won the Macau Open in August. He reached semi-final in the China Masters, but once again failed to beat his all time rivalry Lin Dan. Then, Lee participated in the Japan Open, he only manage into second round of the Open, before won the Hong Kong Open in November. His inconsistency saw him tumbles down in the first round of the China Open. In December, Lee defended his Super Series Masters Finals title, which saw the competition played without the top badminton players in the world.

Lee started the year with the title in all events he took part, his first treble in the Super Series titles. His first ever Korea Open crown, sixth Malaysia Open, and defeated Kenichi Tago to win the oldest and prestigious badminton championship in the world, the All England Open, his first one since he took part in 2004. Lee participated in the Thomas Cup in his home ground. He managed to defeat Kenichi Tago and take the first point, despite Malaysia's eventual loss (2–3) to Japan. In the quarter finals, he beat Peter Gade, thus helping to secure Malaysia's place in the semi-finals. In the semi finals against China, Lee was defeated by Lin Dan, which ended his 18-match unbeaten record since the start of the year. In January, Lee won his seventh Malaysia Open title by defeating Taufik Hidayat from Indonesia in the final However, he failed to defend the Korea Open title, the world's first ever million-dollar badminton tournament, after being beaten by Lin Dan from China in three games. In March, Lee cruised into the final of the All England Open for the third consecutive time and retained his title successfully with a convincing straight games victory over Lin Dan, and was praised by prime minister Najib Tun Razak. On Labour Day, he won his first ever India Open, and also his third consecutive Malaysia Open Grand Prix Gold title a week later. Despite the fact that Lee won all his matches he played during the Sudirman Cup, Malaysia's journey ended in quarterfinals, after being beaten by South Korea 2–3.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Total Pageviews

Popular Posts