Zee Media Bureau/Jayanta Oinam
Copenhagen: Lee Chong Wei's dream of becoming a world champion once again crumbled on Sunday. Playing in his third successive Badminton World Championships final, world number one from Malaysia lost to Chen Long of China.
Playing in his 85 career singles final, Chong Wei failed to cope with his own expectations as he committed numerous enforced errors in the first set against Long. Then, despite a valiant fight back in the second set, he lost the match in straight sets 21-19, 21-19 at Ballerup Arena.
This year, Chong Wei had defeated Long in the India Open and All England Open finals, while the Chinese was triumphant in the Korea Open. At the absence of his arch-rival Lin Dan, 25-year-old Long has been carrying the Chinese hopes against the game's most resilient and consistent player.
Chong Wei, 31, is already a legend of the game despite missing out on the two most prestigious titles – Olympics and World Championships. He tasted defeat in the last two World Championship finals in 2011 and 2013, to Lin Dan. Similarly, in the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games, he lost the gold medal match to the Chinese.