Setback for India Open; Lin Dan, Chong Wei opt out

Badminton (2)

Ace shuttlers Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia and his Chinese nemesis Lin Dan are skipping the Indian Open to conserve their energy for a potential clash at the Malaysian Open in Kuching from April 4-10.

Men’s singles No. 1 Chong Wei pulled out of the Indian Open, which starts in New Delhi next week. The 34-year-old Chong Wei was stretched to the limit en route to winning the All-England last week. He wants to take a rest before heading to Kuching.

Without Chong Wei, Malaysia’s representatives in India will be unheralded Zulfadli Zulkiffli (men’s singles), Tan Wee Kiong-Goh V Shem (men’s doubles) and Chan Peng Soon-Goh Liu Ying (mixed doubles).

As for Lin Dan, he bounced back to win the Swiss Open title on Sunday after a disappointing All-England outing. Like Chong Wei, his next tournament is the Malaysian Open.

“We pulled Chong Wei out of the Indian Open based on his form in training. The All-England victory took a toll on him. He’s not at his best right now. An extra week of training will give Chong Wei the time to be ready for the home tournament,” said Malaysian national coach Tey Seu Bock.

In the draw released by the Badminton World Federation (BWF) last week, top seed Chong Wei has been drawn in the same half with third seed Chen Long, Yuqi and Tian Houwei of China; Angus Ng Ka Long of Hong Kong and Indian K. Srikanth.

The 33-year-old Lin Dan, the seventh seed, was in the lower half with second seed Jan O Jorgensen and Viktor Axelsen of Denmark; Jonatan Christie and Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia; Chou Tien-chen of Taiwan and Son Wan-ho of South Korea.