Former World No 1 Viktor Axelsen's injury woes continue as the Dane was forced to withdraw from the upcoming World Badminton Championships, which will be held in Basel from 19-25 August, due to a back injury.
Following an injury-ridden 2018 season, Axelsen had started the 2019 season with the Barcelona Masters and India Open titles, and in between those two also won silver at the prestigious All England when he went down fighting against Kento Momota in the final.
The lanky Dane last competed at the Sudirman Cup in May this year after which allergies have kept him out of action. Allergies and asthma issue kept him out of the European Games, while back problems ruled him out of Indonesia Open and Japan Open.
Axelsen, who won the event in 2017, did everything possible to get ready for the prestigious competition, but it wasn't enough at the end. Badminton Denmark said in their press release that Axelsen and Team Denmark's medical staff struggled to prepare him for the World Championships despite improvements.
"I'm very sad and disappointed about the situation. The World Championships is the biggest event of the year and I had obviously been looking forward to playing. I've done everything I could to get ready for the World Championships, but I must also be realistic and listen to my body and to the doctors' advice," Axelsen was quoted as saying in the press release from Badminton Denmark.
A disc protrusion in the lower back has been troubling the lanky Dane during his on-court sessions.
Badminton Denmark expressed their disappointment at the situation and said it was "unfortunate" that Axelsen will not play the World Championships as he was "medal candidate".
"Viktor is one of the world's best badminton players and was the biggest medal candidate for Denmark for the upcoming World Championships. Therefore, it is of course very unfortunate for both him and Denmark that he will not play at the World Championships," a federation official was quoted as saying.
World No 1 Kento Momota is the favourite to become the world champion in Basel next month.
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Updated Date: Jul 31, 2019 17:02:17 IST