Lin Dan can’t be counted out despite string of disappointments

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Don't count Lin Dan out just yet for the Tokyo Olympics. (photo: AFP)
Don't count Lin Dan out just yet for the Tokyo Olympics. (photo: AFP)

Beijing: The Chinese Badminton Association provided a report in regards to the training status of China national badminton team in Chengdu, China, on Wednesday.

China’s singles head coach Xia Xuanze said that two-time Olympic Lin Dan still wanted to give it one more shot at the Tokyo Olympics.

Even though Lin Dan was defeated by compatriot Chen Long 17-21, 8-21 in the 2020 All England second round, Lin has vowed not to give up on his fading dream of competing at a fifth Olympics in Tokyo.

Xia Xuanze said that Lin Dan does not want to retire yet.

“After returning from All England, Lin Dan stayed in self-quarantine before taking 3 weeks off going back to see his family. He is now back in training with the team,” said Xia.

“With all international badminton tournaments suspended and with the Olympics being postponed to next year, Lin Dan still has the opportunity to qualify for the Tokyo Games,” added Xia.

“Right now, instead of debating about the pros and cons of the Olympic postponement, it makes more sense for us to start preparing for next year,” explained Xia.

“We would need to prevent our shuttlers from getting injured, and we also need to find a way to help older shuttlers to recover faster. Meanwhile, we would need to improve and to innovate on the technical aspects of our games,” stressed Xia.

The reigning Olympic champion, Chen Long said in a recent interview that his new coach, Li Mao, has introduced him some new techniques in training.

“The problems for Chen Long are he is getting older and he needs to maintain his physical fitness while avoiding injuries. Though there may be still some emotional ups and downs for him, but our team is doing well to help players manage their emotions, stress, and energy. All Chen needs now is to get back to systematic training.”

With the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to be delayed by about one year, that would also give China’s current World No. 10 men’s singles player Shi Yuqi more time to recover from injuries, as well as adjusting for better technical, psychological and competitive condition.

“He may need to recover his form through real competition,” said Xia.

“But how to stay active and fit when there is no competition for such a long time, it also another question we are trying to solve.”

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