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Lee Chong Wei linked to a possible doping scandal

Clinging to hope, Malaysians on Twitter reacted with disbelief at the possibility of a doping scandal involving badminton hero, Datuk Lee Chong Wei, who awaits a final confirmation pending test results of a second urine sample.Lee, the world number one, was not pinpointed in a New Straits Times report this morning which cited a Badminton Association of Malaysia (BAM) source, who said that a top national shuttler had failed a random doping test conducted during the World Championships in Copenhagen in August.

But the speculation on social media began anyway, apparently after television channel, TV3, reportedly named Lee in its 1.30pm newscast, according to tweets by social media users.

“Buletin 1.30 TV3: World No 1 badminton player Datuk Lee Chong Wei found positive for doping at World Championship in Denmark,” tweeted a user with the handle @mamifoo.

Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin refused to name the athlete involved, saying that the “B sample” was still being tested. He also refused to state the type of drug used.

“If the B sample turns out to be negative, it will be unfair to the athlete as his name would have been jeopardised,” Khairy had told reporters, adding that it was against the World Anti-Doping Agency’s rules to identify athletes whose second samples were still being tested.

By then, speculation that Lee was involved had gone viral and a pall of gloom hung over some social media users who questioned the news and hoped it was untrue.

“If news about Lee Chong Wei doping is true I’d be pretty upset,” tweeted user @aaziefkhalid.

Another use @Man_H94 said: “Still suspect that Datuk Lee Chong Wei was innocent. Have hope.”

@cikpeanut said: “refused to believe that dato lee chong wei found positive. I refused,” while @aima32 tweeted: “Datuk Lee Chong Wei found positive for doping? Like seriously? If it is true then I will be sad coz i adore him so much”.

One user, @AdamMinter, noted the string of bad news involving Malaysia and tweeted: “The Lee Chong Wei news from Malaysia is absolutely mind-boggling, a low blow in a really lousy year for a country that deserves better”.

Other Twitter users said there had to be a mistake, with one even suggesting sabotage, while some seemed to take it as fact.

“After our wushu Asian Games athlete failed her doping test Lee Chong Wei is the recent athlete to be link up with the same issue,” said @eliyayaa.

“Lee Chong Wei tested positive. Habis career dia,” tweeted @aminfuad_10.
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“Lee Chong Wei positive dada? Emmm Lee Chong Weed ke?” tweeted @IAmSeanny with a pun on Lee’s Chinese name.

“Dah positive dadah pulak Lee Chong Wei ni,” said @FyzaAziz93.

Quite a few also expressed anger and disappointment, like @blumun14 who tweeted: “Literally cry because Datuk Lee Chong Wei was found positive for doping. You’re no. 1 in the world. Why?”

@ErnaLosukin was another: “Aa? My idol? Lee Chong Wei? Positive dada?Arghhhhhhhhhhh”.

One user, worried about Malaysia’s future in badminton, tweeted: “Dato Lee Chong Wei positive dada?? Ya Allah sapa nak ganti pemain badminton Malaysia yang sehebat chong wei ni” (Oh God who will replace a great Malaysian badminton player as great as chong wei), and put a crying emoticon at the end of tweet.

Another declared undying support for Lee, no matter the outcome. “Walaupun Datuk Lee Chong Wei positive dadah gine gine pun nya tetap idola badminton sampe bila bila. We always support you DLCW!!!!!” (Even if Datuk Lee Chong Wei tests positive for drug use he will remain my badminton idol forever).

A few also tweeted birthday greetings to Lee, whose birthday is today.

An athlete found taking drugs or other performance-enhancing substances faces a two-year suspension, but may also appeal.

If Lee is indeed confirmed to have used drugs after the second test is complete, he could miss the 2016 Olympics.

Prior to this, Malaysia had to return the Asian gold medal won by wushu champion Tai Cheau Xuen who failed her dope test.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected Cheau Xuan’s appeal in a hearing held on the sidelines of the Incheon Games.

Cheau Xuen‘s A and B urine samples both tested positive for the banned stimulant sibutramine.

A total of five athletes failed doping tests at the Games in Korea and were expelled. It was reported that a record 1,900 athletes out of some 9,500 in Incheon underwent drug tests.