Shuttlers and fans of the badminton community wished the Malaysian legend Lee Chong Wei a ‘happy retirement’ after the former number one emerged with the news in an emotional press conference on Thursday.
Wei has had an illustrious career, with 348 weeks spent as world number one, and despite never winning a gold medal at the Olympics or finishing a season as world champion, the Malaysian shuttler has had a brilliant career. Wei, 36, suffered a cancer scare, and never successfully rehabilitating, was forced to drop out of contention from the Tokyo Olympics, which is less than a year away.
Here are the best reactions from the badminton fraternity to the big news:
You have inspired everyone who loves badminton, you will always be a hero for all of us! 🙏🏸
— Carolina Marín (@CarolinaMarin) June 13, 2019
Badminton legend and three-time Olympic silver medallist Lee Chong Wei 🇲🇾 announces retirement, ending a phenomenal 19-year career, following treatment for cancer.
— Olympic Channel (@olympicchannel) 13 June 2019
Six-time Indonesia Open champions announced his retirement today.
Thank you for your dedication to badminton world, a legend who inspires others.
— BADMINTON INDONESIA (@INABadminton) 13 June 2019
— BWF (@bwfmedia) 13 June 2019
I’m sorry that I couldn’t make it to Tokyo this time around. And I’m sorry I didn’t deliver an Olympic gold. But I know I’ve no regrets as I’ve tried my best. My very best. Thank you very much to all of you. Lee Chong Wei signing out.https://t.co/V0K5GSVLh4 pic.twitter.com/Sfz0eBwOTm
— Dato’ Lee Chong Wei (@LeeChongWei) June 13, 2019
By far the toughest player on the circuit to play against in all the different conditions in the circuit for a long long time . Have enjoyed watching all your big matches and also… https://t.co/w2O4jZwk3d @LeeChongWei #legend pic.twitter.com/eJ2pXt1UwN
— Parupalli Kashyap (@parupallik) June 13, 2019
In the press conference, Lee Chong Wei said, “My decision to retire is a heavy one. I really love this sport. But it is a demanding sport. I thank all Malaysians for the past 19 years.”