HYDERABAD (India) – WORLD number one Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia crashed out of the Indian Open badminton tournament on Wednesday, blaming the shock first-round defeat on ill-health and bad umpiring.
Chen Long of China, the world junior champion in 2007, came from behind to stun Lee 7-21, 21-16, 21-18 on the opening day of the 120,000-dollar event at the Gachibowli indoor stadium here.
‘The Chinese played well, but I must say I was not at my best,’ said Lee.
‘I have been on medication since I came here. I must have eaten something that did not agree with me during my flight here from Switzerland and I was not feeling anywhere near my best.’
Lee, who was runners-up at the All-England championships earlier this month and won the Swiss Open last week, also slammed the Indian officials who umpired his match.
‘The umpires are not fit for a tournament of this standard, they need to improve their quality of judgement,’ he said. ‘I hope it will be better in August,’ Lee added, referring to the world championships Hyderabad hosts that month.
Chen, ranked 147 in the world, said it was the biggest win of his career.
‘I know I am not in the same league as him, but I played hard,’ the Chinese said. ‘I hope I can go well from here.’
Meanwhile, second-seeded Taufik Hidayat of Indonesia swamped Indian qualifier Nand Gopal 21-8, 21-13 in the first round.