Injury forces badminton champs out of competition

The eleventh hour withdrawal of the Olympic champion Lin Dan (CHINA) and silver medallist Lee Chong Wei (MALAYSIA) has opened up the men's singles field at the XiamenAir Australian Badminton Open.


Both players were forced to withdraw because of injury, with Lee Chong Wei using the unexpected down time to take in the sites of Sydney with his wife. Despite just landing in Australia with an injury from competition at the Indonesian Superseries, the current world #2 ranked player attended a launch event for the XiamenAir Australian Badminton Open on Monday with Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events and Minister for Sport, Stuart Ayres.
Men's singles World Champion Chen Long (CHINA) remains in the draw. His cautious early exit from the Indonesian Superseries has not impacted his readiness for the XiamenAir ABO, with the top ranked player warming up with ease in a one against two arrangement yesterday.
Chen, the defending champion in Sydney, is seeking his first Superseries win for this year at the Australian Open tournament. Rivaling him for the top spot are Singapore Superseries winner Sony Dwi Kuncoro on the other side of the draw, and Taiwan's Chou Tien Chen, a Superseries winner himself, at the quarter-finals.
Olympic champions in Women's singles (Li Xuerui) and Men's doubles (Fu Haifeng) will take to court in Round of 32 action today.
All England mixed doubles sensations Debby Susanto and her partner with perhaps the most thunderous smash on earth right now, Praveen Jordan, take on Koreans Kim Jae Hwan / Kim Ji Won.
Spectators arriving in this evening can look forward to World Champions Mohammad Ahsan / Hendra Setiawan showing off their skills.