Cancer-hit Lee announces badminton comeback bid
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 10, 2018 (AFP) - Malaysian star Lee Chong Wei said he plans to return to badminton after successful treatment for nose cancer, insisting he had no intention of retiring.
The ex-world number one said he could resume training as early as next month and was targeting a competitive comeback at the All England Open in March.
"I finished all my treatment... and have recovered very well," a cheerful and healthy-looking Lee, 36, told a press conference in Kuala Lumpur.
"I want to come back to court," he said, adding: "As of now, I am not retiring."
The three-time Olympic silver medallist was making his first public appearance since his shock diagnosis was announced in September.
Lee, who returned from treatment in Taiwan last month, said it was his "dream" to play in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, which would be his fifth Summer Games.
"I think qualify (for the Tokyo Olympics) should be no problem for me," he said, but added that his health was his current priority.
"I just try my very best because I love my country... and I love badminton," he said.
The player however conceded that if his health does not improve enough, he may have to hang up his racquet: "If my condition is good, I will continue. If I can't, I will stop."
Lee, who enjoys superstar status in Malaysia, was diagnosed with early- stage nose cancer, forcing him to pull out of the Asian Games and world championships.
The father of two said that when he found out about the illness, "I was crying for a week, couldn't eat, couldn't sleep".
On the advice of his doctors he travelled to Taiwan for treatment, during which he lost five kilos (11 pounds).
Malaysia's badminton player Lee Chong Wei attends a press conference in Kuala Lumpur