World and Olympic badminton champion Lin Dan is set to make his first appearance of the season at the All-England Championships in March after missing the year’s first two competitions in South Korea and Malaysia.
"I was not physically ready for the past two international events," Lin told China Daily during his endorsement press conference with Gillette on Sunday.
"After a period of break and tune-up I feel much better and will definitely compete at the All-England Championships."
Lin said he will try his best to defend the title, which he won last year by beating Lee Chong Wei 21-19, 21-12.
"It’s the start of the year and a very important event for me. I will try my best to win," he said.
Lin, dubbed "Super Dan", was busy and almost invincible in international competitions last year, playing 39 matches and only losing twice.
"I was really tired after a busy 2009," Lin said. "I did a good job and I hope I can continue that this year."
Lin, 27, said he will reduce the number of tournaments he will compete in this year to stay healthy and energetic.
"As a young player you have to play as many matches as possible in order to gain experience. As a veteran, you should choose high-quality competition as the best way to stay healthy and remain in peak competitive form."
Thanks to his good looks, Lin is often seen in fashion magazines and has attracted a number of endorsements.
Gillette is the latest to sign up the household name. It marks the first time Gillette has partnered with a Chinese athlete. The company also endorses the likes of soccer icons Kaka, Lionel Messi and Thierry Henry and tennis great Roger Federer.
Lin said his increasing off-court activities did not affect his on-court performance.
"Some people are concerned I will be distracted by these things. Actually, these are also good experiences for me. I have learned how to balance my time and how to adjust the mind when off-court things might affect you.
"I will keep my mind on badminton and just wish I could play the sport all of my life."
Lin’s romance with former world No 1 Xie Xingfang is also a hot topic and he revealed they might get married after the 2012 London Games.
"For now, preparing for the 2012 Olympics is at the top of my list. I will think about marriage after the Games."