BEIJING – Rejuvenated badminton veteran Zhou Mi has set her sights on a world title after recapturing the number one ranking three years after being kicked off China’s national team following a knee injury.
Twenty-nine year-old Zhou, who retired in 2006 but came back last year after switching allegiance to Hong Kong, took top spot after reaching the final of the Denmark Open last month.
“I want to show the fun of badminton to the Hong Kong fans and repay their support with the championship title,” the Athens bronze medallist told China’s Titan Sports.
Zhou, who was ineligible to play for Hong Kong at August’s Beijing Olympics, said the disappointment of watching from the sidelines had contributed to her recent form, which has seen her clinch two titles from her last three starts.
“I was really upset when I knew I had no chance to play the Beijing Olympics. It powered me up in the tournaments after the Games,” Zhou said.
Despite having held down the world number one spot as China’s top player for long periods earlier in the decade, Zhou described her time in the country’s ultra-competitive team as “a really hard experience”.
Shortly after retiring, Zhou flirted with a switch to Malaysia to prolong her career but was warned off by team officials who saw the move as a “betrayal” of the Motherland, local media reported.
Zhou said there was no resentment.
“What I am doing now is absolutely not about proving anything to them. I am only proving to myself that I am still able to make it,” she said.
Football-England/ Arsenal’s Adebayor out for three weeks London (dpa) – Arsenal striker Emmanuel Adebayor is set to be out for three weeks with an ankle injury, his manager Arsene Wenger confirmed.
The Togo international suffered the injury in the defeat at Stoke City last weekend and is now set to miss Wednesday’s Champions League match against Fenerbahce and the bulk of this month.
Wenger is also awaiting news of the extent of a shoulder injury to England winger Theo Walcott.
“Adebayor will be three weeks,” Wenger said.
“Walcott could be days or weeks. It is the shoulder he had the surgery on (in the summer of 2007).”
Walcott could, though, be back for Saturday’s Premier League clash with Manchester United.