KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 19 ― Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had nothing but praise for national shuttler Datuk Lee Chong Wei who bested China's Lin Dan tonight in a nail-biting game to advance to the badminton men’s singles final in the Olympic Games.
Yayasan Khazanah’s 10th anniversary dinner do here was even paused so the assembled guests could watch the action on three large screens in the ballroom and cheer on the Malaysian ace.
"I am very delighted to be here with all of you tonight, my presence here has been made much more delightful with the victory of Datuk Lee Chong Wei, although in a nailbiting way, but what is important is that at the end of the match he was the victor.
"So Malaysia is on course now to win two gold medals," he told those gathered at Yayasan Khazanah's 10th anniversary dinner.
He also nodded at men’s badminton doubles pair Goh V Shem and Tan Wee Kiong, who will be playing tonight against China’s Fu Haifeng-Zhang Nan for a chance at winning a gold medal for Malaysia.
“That’s why I have to rush back because I have a little group to cheer on and subsequently Lee Chong Wei has a chance to win a gold medal for Malaysia. So really good things are happening to us,” he added.
He ended with his speech by also saying "let us pray that Malaysia wins two gold medals".
Earlier, the scheduled welcome address and key note speech by Yayasan Khazanah chairman Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed and Najib respectively were deferred slightly as Lee and Lin's third set of badminton match was ongoing.
The match was broadcast live on three screens in the grand ballroom at the Hilton Hotel here, with the crowd cheering at every point won by Lee, with the loudest and longest cheer at the final point won.
The match’s third and final set saw Lee and Lin locked in a match-point.
Guests in the ballroom here gave a collective groan when Lee ceded a three-point lead by one point midway in this set.
Lee eventually won the third set 22-20. He had lost the first set 15-21, but recovered swiftly to take the second set 21-11.
With this latest score, Malaysia is guaranteed at least another silver tomorrow night when the men’s singles will be decided.
Malaysia has so far won two silvers and one bronze medal in this Olympics.
In tomorrow’s gold match, Lee will be battling China’s Chen Long.