Feeling his Wei back

Making a return: Lee Chong Wei has not played competitively since the World Superseries Finals in Dubai last December.

PETALING JAYA: Lee Chong Wei has made a quick recovery from his knee injury and is all set to compete in the All-England badminton championships.

“The decision was made yesterday. Both my coaches and doctors agreed that I’m fit enough to compete,” said Chong Wei, who was initially expected to be out for three to six weeks after slipping and injuring the medial collateral ligament (MCL) on his left knee last month.

“I still feel a little pain and I’m not at 100% right now. So, it’ll be tough ... but I’ve already made up my mind to go and I’ll just need to prepare myself mentally.”

The All-England will be held in Birmingham from March 7-11.

The three-time Olympic silver medallist, who hasn’t competed since the World Superseries Finals in Dubai last December, admitted that he’s not expecting immediate results in Birmingham.

“This will be my first tournament in a while and I’m really just going there to try and get a feel of competitive action,” said Chong Wei.

“I’m building up for the World Championships in August ... this is really the start of the season for me.

“Besides, this is possibly my last time competing in the All-England, so I’m just hoping to enjoy my game there.”

The top-seeded Chong Wei has been drawn to meet a qualifier in the first round.

He is expected to meet world No. 7 Tian Houwei of China in the quarter-finals and possibly world No. 4 Son Wan-ho of South Korea in the last four.

After the All-England, Chong Wei is down to compete in the India Open (March 28-April 2), Malaysian Open (April 4-9), Asia Badminton Championships (April 25-30), Sudirman Cup (May 21-28), Indonesian Open (June 13-18) before the world meet in Glasgow, Scotland (Aug 21-27).

National singles coach Hendrawan believes that it’s a good sign that Chong Wei has shown the resolve to bounce back quickly from his knee injury.

“The National Sports Institute’s (NSI) physiotherapist, Sandra (Fiedler) has given Chong Wei the green light. On Monday, he went for an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan and the results were positive.

“He was a bit cautious with his court movement during training last week, but he’s back to his usual routine this week.

“He hasn’t lost his competitive edge and that’s important,” said Hendrawan, who won’t be able to accompany Chong Wei to Birmingham due to medical reasons.

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