KUALA LUMPUR: Former badminton world number one Lee Chong Wei resumed training on Wednesday (Apr 15) in Kuala Lumpur, after having been out of competitive action since his temporary suspension for failing a doping test last year.
Lee had just faced a three-person Badminton World Federation (BWF) panel in Amsterdam on Saturday, after testing positive for the banned anti-inflammatory drug dexamethasone at the World Championships in Copenhagen in August. The two-time Olympic silver medallist then picked up his racquet a day after returning from Amsterdam.
But with the BWF decision only due in three weeks, Lee looks certain to miss the Sudirman Cup in China in May. Lee may also be late for the qualifying rounds for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
"The qualifying rounds for the Olympics start on May 1 and my ranking has dropped to 40-something, possibly 50,” he said. “It won't be easy to catch up; that's why I need to keep up with my training and fitness."
Just two weeks ago, Lee's ranking was 14th.
Malaysia's newly-appointed chief national coach Morten Frost is determined to do all he can to help the 32-year-old win Malaysia's first Olympic gold. The four-time All England champion is shaking things up a little by making Lee train under Indonesian coach Hendrawan.
"He is an outstanding player; he is very unique,” said Frost. “I have absolutely no doubt he can make it despite getting a bit older.
“I think it's time to make some changes to see whether other inputs, other people and ways of thinking can inspire him for the last leg - the two major tournaments, the World Championships and the Olympics in 2016."
Lee has maintained his innocence even after both his urine samples tested positive for dexamethasone.