SHEDDING TEARS FOR MALAYSIA

By: Lee Chong Wei
Two time Olympic silver medallist

Words cannot describe how I felt when Lin Dan clinched the final point to take the Olympic gold medal at the Wembley Arena on Sunday.

It was as if I was watching a re-run of a movie and I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me.

I had let down my country, my fans, my family and above all myself as I so wanted to win the gold medal. I am truly sorry as I failed to deliver the medal.

If there was something I did, then it was that I managed to unite all Malaysians for one common cause, that sport and unity was the ultimate winner.

Often I have been asked what was going through my mind when the score stood at 19-19. Did I regret letting the shuttle drop that gave Lin Dan the 19th point to draw level. What was my game plan at that time?

To be honest I just focussed at the task at hand. I had no regrets losing the point as some may say I misjudged the flight of the shuttle. However it was going out and I was shocked when it just nicked the line.

Still that did not affect my concentration as I knew I could beat him. But fate dealt me a cruel blow as lady luck was on his sideas the net chord saved him.

When the final point was won, I just collapsed, knowing I had let 28 million Malaysians who were counting on me to win down. And when they played the Chinese national anthem, tears flowed freely as I had dreamt of listening to Negaraku at the famous Wembley Arena.

Some 9 weeks ago there were doubts that I could even step onto the court, but today I can say that the old Chong Wei is alive and kicking. A break of one week and its back to the courts as I resume training, preparing for the Chinese league. My next tournament will be the Japan Open in late September,.

I lost yes, but I gave it my best shot. In a way I am glad that most Malaysians understand that I had given it my all and if I had been born in a different era then things would have been different.

There is only one Lin Dan and in the same way there can only be one Chong Wei.

Lin Dan played very well, raised his game and was devastating with his strokes in the second set. As for me, I managed to neutralise his advantage and when I broke away to lead18-16 it boosted my confidence but alas it was not meant to be.

China had a clean sweep of the gold medals here, as they have done in the past two world championships. And I do not see the domination ending any time soon for they have invested heavily in development, something that we in Malaysia, Indonesia, Korea and Denmark need to do in order to challenge the Chinese supremacy.

The Olympics could well be the swansong of the likes of Peter Gade and Taufik Hidayat but not Chong Wei as I intend to stake my claim in the 2013 World championships as well as the 2014 Asian and Commonwealth Games.

And Lin Dan can be rest assured that he will not have things easy over the next two years.

I thank all Malaysians for their faith in me, apologise for my failure and promise you that I will do my best to bring honours to the country.