KUALA LUMPUR: Badminton ace Lee Chong Wei is “recovering positively” from his treatment in Taiwan for nose cancer, a sports official said today.
But Norza Zakaria, Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) president, said the former world number one was continuing his treatment and won’t be returning home soon.
“Lee is recovering positively from his treatment in Taiwan,” he told AFP. “He will stay in Taiwan and continue with the treatment. Lee will come back when he completes his treatment.”
Norza said he was in close communication with Lee, 35, and rubbished news reports saying the former world number one would return to Malaysia on Sunday.
A sports official familiar with the situation said Lee is undergoing proton therapy, where the cancer is targeted with a beam of protons.
Last month, BAM announced that the three-time Olympic silver medallist had been diagnosed with early-stage nose cancer.
BAM had in July announced that Lee was suffering from a respiratory-related disorder and was pulling out of the World Championships and Asian Games.
Lee is one of Malaysia’s top sports stars after carving out a long run of success at badminton’s highest levels, despite his oft-lamented failure to win a world or Olympic title.
He is currently ranked fifth in the world, after fighting his way back to prominence following his return from a doping ban in 2015.
Lee tested positive for a banned anti-inflammatory drug at the 2014 World Championships, an incident which many feared would end his career.