BIRTHDAY BOY: Chong Wei turns 31 but the World No 1 has no plans to call it a day anytime soon
AGE may not be on his side as Lee Chong Wei turns 31 today but the World No 1 is showing no signs of slowing down.
Chong Wei's birthday wish is to win the World Championships and the Olympic Games.
It is, however, getting tougher for the shuttler as China, the World No 1 nation in the sport, have already produced players of similar quality to two-time Olympic gold medallist Lin Dan.
World No 2 Chen Long and Du Pengyu are Chong Wei's biggest threats but the Malaysian is determined to continue progressing in the coming years.
Chong Wei, who is married to former woman shuttler Wong Mew Choo, has lost six of 13 meetings against Chen Long while Du Pengyu has only recorded one win over the Malaysian. Chen Long, a former Asian Junior champion, edged Chong Wei in the last two meetings at last year's Hong Kong Open and the All England in March.
World No 9 Wang Zhengming, Chen Yuekun (29th), Gao Huan (31st) Tian Houwei (67th) and Song Xue (75th) are the other China players capable of challenging Chong Wei in the future.
Chong Wei is, however, determined to remain at the top of his game and play in major tournaments before retiring after the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Two-time finalist in the world meet and the Olympic Games, Chong Wei is near untouchable in 'Open' tournaments but lacks the confidence in major events.
"I have been competing against China's best shuttlers in title deciding matches in tournaments for many years. I will do my best to be at the best level," said Chong Wei in Odense on Saturday.
Although, age is just a number for Chong Wei, the shuttler will have to take a different approach in training and play only in selected tournaments from next year.
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