Indonesia scooped the gold medal, retaining their title in the final of the SEA Games men’s competition, in spite of Taufik being left out of the team. Just like in 2009, for the last edition, Indonesia beat Malaysia 3-1.
Article and photos by Ira Ratnati, live from Jakarta
Jakarta – There was a loud crowd cheer when Markis Kido/Hendra Setiawan clinched the second game 21-14 against Malaysian Mak Hee Chun / Ong Soon Hock, after they won the first game by 21-10. This final win from the Olympic champions had given Indonesia the gold medal.
Indonesia had won the first point from Simon Santoso, who replaced Taufik Hidayat on the first singles. Simon playing really well against Liew Daren, winning 22-20 and 21-12. For the second match of the tie, world #6, Muhammad Ahsan / Bona Septano failed to clinch the important second point. They lost to Lim Khim Wah / Goh Wei Shem in a thriller, where they lost the first game 18-21 but made up for it in the second 21-15. During the third game, they failed to nab the last two points after they had drawn even at 23-all. Instead, the Malaysians won 25-23, putting Malaysia back into the tie.
Tommy Sugiarto took his responsibilities and beat Mohammad Arif Abdul Latif, 21-13 and 21-17 to put his team in the lead before the reigning Olympic champs took it home in two games to clinch the title for Indonesia, with a final 3-1 victory.
Hendrawan, a native from Indonesia but coaching the Malaysian team, was happy about the general attitude of his players. “I thought they were playing really well, they’re showing their best. It is not easy to play under the pressure of the host supporters, and it is good sign for our first doubles that they could win their match,” he said.
On the other hand, Christian Hadinata, head coach of the Indonesian national team paid tribute to Malaysia’s doubles. “Their first men’s doubles are strong. We have to admit that they were playing well. We were hoping to get the points from the men’s singles, because we have a better squad, but we really must pay tribute to Malaysia for playing well under the pressure here in Istora,” he said.
Indonesia has targeted four gold medals from badminton. Now they are looking for the next three gold. “We are on target, having reached the gold medal from the men’s team, we are now looking for another three golds, from mixed doubles, men’s doubles and men’s singles,” added Maria Fransisca, manager of the Indonesian team.
The individual competition kicks off on Wednesday and the draws are now available from the SEA Games website.
Men’s Team Final Result
Indonesia 3, Malaysia 1
Simon Santoso beat Liew Daren 22-20, 21-12
Muhammad Ahsan / Bona Septano lost to Lim Khim Wah / Goh Wei Shem 18-21, 21-15, 23-25
Tommy Sugiarto beat Mohammad Arif Abdul Latif 21-13, 21-17
Markis Kido / Hendra Setiawan beat Mak Hee Chun / Ong Soon Hock 21-10, 21-14
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