Chris Langridge fears he may have played his final ever game at the Yonex All England Championships.
The decorated Epsom-born player saw his hopes of a maiden hometown glory go up in smoke as him and Marcus Ellis succumbed to quarter-final defeat in the men’s doubles, losing in three games against Vladimir Ivanov and Ivan Sozonov at Arena Birmingham.
The 34-year-old is an experienced customer on the court, scooping Olympic bronze alongside Ellis in 2016 and Commonwealth Games gold in 2018 during a glittering career at the highest level.
But after seeing his aspirations of becoming the first English player to win a Yonex All England title since 2005 dashed, he worries he may never make another appearance under the glowing Birmingham lights.
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“To be honest, it’s tough about the future - I don’t know if I’m going to get to play in another Yonex All England,” he said.
“I’m just too old - I haven’t put an exact date on it but it’s obviously a year away, and I’m going to be officially a veteran then.
“I think it probably will be my last one this year, so it is a bit gutting to have such a good opportunity to make a semi-final as we’ve never made a semi here before.
“It would have been amazing to finish on a very big high, but a quarter-final is still a very respectable result - we’ll have to see what happens with a number of things.”
Ellis and Langridge lost a tightly-contested first game 21-18 before restoring parity with a 21-11 win in the second, teeing up a decider to determine whether or not they would book a semi-final date with destiny.
But it wasn’t to be despite the raucous Birmingham roar, losing 21-8 in the third to break English hearts.
The experienced Langridge, however, says it isn’t all doom and gloom after defeat.
“I’m both proud of our performance and disappointed - I’m obviously disappointed at the moment but to be honest, most of the last six weeks I’ve just spent in bed,’ he added.
“I’ve been tussling with illnesses left, right and centre, so to have played makes us both very pleased.
“If people actually knew what we a partnership have to deal with it is quite impressive, so we’re obviously very pleased regarding that but the outcome today was quite frustrating - we felt we let it slip through our fingers."
Witness Legends Begin at the 2020 Yonex All England Open Badminton Championships at Arena Birmingham between March 11-15. Secure your tickets at https://www.allenglandbadminton.com/ today.