SEPANG: Singles shuttler Julia Wong was hoping to contribute to Malaysia’s cause in her debut outing in the Sudirman Cup world mixed team championship in Guangzhou. Instead she returned home prematurely in pain and in a wheelchair.
Julia made a painful exit after coming down with a left knee injury during her match in the Division One Group A tie against Hong Kong on Monday. And she is fearing the worse as the injury could turn out to be more serious than thought.
“The doctor has said that I have torn my ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) and will probably have to go for an operation. This will be the worst injury I have suffered in my career. I don’t know when I can come back to court,” said the world No. 15, who put up a brave front even though her leg was in plaster cast.
Julia recalled that she was trying to retrieve a shot from Yip Pui Yin in the first game when she fell awkwardly.
“I can’t remember whether I knocked my knee hard or it was the impact of the landing. I heard a crack and feared for the worst after that as I could not even walk,” she said.
From the airport, Julia was taken to the Damansara Specialist Hospital in Petaling Jaya yesterday.
If the medical tests show that it is indeed a torn ACL, she will have to kiss goodbye to making her first appearance in the World Championships in Hyderabad. She has qualified together with Wong Mew Choo for the championships scheduled for Aug 10-16.
The National Sports Institute (NSI) director general, Datuk Dr Ramlan Aziz, who was at KLIA to provide moral support, said: “We have to find out whether it is a partial or a total tear of the ligament. But it definitely does not look good. If she has a torn ACL, we are looking at at least six months of complete rest before she can get back on court.”