Chong Wei

Chong Wei says sorry after heartbreaking final loss

Lee beat China’s Lin Dan, 15-21, 21-11, 22-20, in Friday’s semifinal match. Dan defeated Lin for a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Games. Lee will face China’s Chen Long in a gold medal match Saturday.

World No. 1 men’s singles shuttler Lee Chong Wei was apologetic after his Rio Olympic final loss to China’s Chen Long, saying he regretted that he failed to deliver gold to the 30 million Malaysians.

“I’m really sorry to disappoint them. I tried my best, but I’ve got to accept that Chen Long played better than me.

“He was well prepared and managed to retrieve all my shots.

“I played better today than I did in the 2012 (London) Olympics and all the World Championships. It was just not my day, but I never once gave up.

“My regret is that I could only win a silver again for the third time,” he said after his 21-18, 21-18 loss to world No. 2 Chen Long.

Asked if he would play in his fifth Olympics in Tokyo in 2020, Chong Wei said: “I don’t think so. I’ll continue until next year’s World Championships and see how my condition is.

“I’ll probably stop playing to give the younger guys a chance to play in the 2020 Olympics.”

On his immediate plans, Chong Wei said he can’t wait to go back home after spending three weeks in Rio.

“Now, I just want to go back to see my kids. I miss my kids, my family,” he said.