Tough start for Lee Chong Wei at 2018 World Championships

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Tuesday's draw pitted Lee against Frenchman Brice Leverdez, who dashed his hopes of winning the world title last year.

Elsewhere in the draw, China's 2016 Olympic champion Chen Long will face reigning world champion Viktor Axelsen in the quarter-finals, while other major Chinese names such as Shi Yuqi and five-time champion Lin Dan feature in the same quarter of the draw and may run into each other in the third round.

Meanwhile, in the women's draw, China's He Bingjiao once again features in the same quarter as Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei, who has won four events so far this year.

35-year-old Lee has returned to form in recent days, after winning his 12th Malaysian Open title last month.

KUALA LUMPUR, July 17 (Xinhua) -- Malaysian shuttler Lee Chong Wei faces a tough fight in the first round of the 24th Badminton World Championships, beginning on July 200 in Nanjing, China.

Japan's Kento Momota, whom Lee has been called "a rising star of tomorrow," is in the same quarter as Anders Antonsen from Denmark and Son Wan Ho from South Korea.