Zee Media Bureau/Jayanta Oinam
New Delhi: World No.1 men`s singles player, Lee Chong Wei won the Badminton World Federation`s (BWF) 2013 Male Player of the Year award. He has also won the award in 2009, 2010 and 2011.
The 31-year-old Malaysian pipped the Chinese superstars Lin Dan and Chen Long, Indonesians Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan, and South Koreans Ko Sung Hyun and Lee Yong Dae to the coveted award.
The two-time Olympic silver medallist, who won seven Super Series titles in 2013, received the award from the President of Badminton Association of India, Dr. Akhilesh Das Gupta at the annual BWF Gala Awards Dinner held in the sidelines of Thomas and Uber Cup tournament being held in Delhi.
Already accorded with the honorific of Datuk as a national hero in his country, Wei helped his team to a historic Thomas Cup final, where they will play Japan at the Siri Fort Sports Complex on Sunday. They have last won the men`s team tournament in 1992.
In women`s section, Li Xuerui of China captured the award after a prolific 2013 season. Last year, the 23-year-old retained her Super Series Final crown and hold to the numero uno ranking throughout year. Other contenders for the award were her compatriots Yihan Wang, Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang, and Intanon.
Despite losing to Thailand`s Ratchanok Intanon at the World Championships at Guangzhou, the Olympic champion captured two Super Series Premier events in Indonesia and China. She also helped China lift the Uber Cup for a record 13th time, beating Japan in the final.
The Promising Player of the Year award was won by the 16-year-old Akane Yamaguchi. The Japanese defended her 2013 World Junior title in April this year. Regarded as one of the rising female suttlers, she captured the Japan Open in 2013.
With Agency inputs