INDONESIA OPEN 2018 Day 1 – Senior Danes go down in Round 1

Denmark lost a former champion and a former world #1 on the first day of play at the 2018 Indonesia Open. Story: Sulistianing Ambarwati, Badzine Correspondent live in Jakarta Photos: […]

Denmark lost a former champion and a former world #1 on the first day of play at the 2018 .

Story: Sulistianing Ambarwati, Badzine Correspondent live in Jakarta
Photos: Yves Lacroix / Badmintonphoto (live)

The Blibli Indonesia Open 2018 is back in its traditional home in Jakarta’s Istora Senayan, which just completed renovations in early 2018.  In addition to showing off the new face its longtime venue, this tournament is also providing higher prize money, increasing from US$1,000,000 last year to $1,250,000, making it the richest individual badminton tournament in history, coming in at $50,000 more than the previous record set by the 2011 Korea Open.

As attractive and interesting as the facility and atmosphere of the Istora are, the matches on the first day of the Indonesia Open were also awesome.  Among the surprises were the early exits by some of the senior shuttlers on the Danish team.  Unable to even start on the road back to finals they’d reached multiple times in the past, both Jan Jorgensen and Boe/Mogensen surprisingly lost to younger players.

In men’s singles, Kanta Tsuneyama was promoted from reserves for the second straight week.  Luckily for him, he made the trip to both Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta despite not yet officially having a match to play.  He lost early in Malaysia but won his match in this tournament, beating none other than three-time finalist and 2014 champion Jan O Jorgensen, in just under an hour.

Even though Tsuneyama lost his first game, he tried to play better and calmer in the second game and managed to force a decider, wherein he conceded only 6 points to Jorgensen.

“I actually met him in last Thomas Cup tournament, so I knew little bit about his performance.  Then, I learned about the way he plays,” Tsuneyama said after his win.

While Jorgensen has continued to struggle since returning from injury, his elder compatriots Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen were the second seeds, are now the third best men’s doubles pair in the world, and have been in 5 finals in the past year, in addition to being runners-up for the second time in Jakarta last year.  Nevertheless, they lost rather quickly to Liao Min Chun / Su Cheng Heng of Chinese Taipei.

Boe and Mogensen could not show their usual expert performance at all.  They had to concede defeat after just 34 minutes.  Liao and Su are perhaps the least heralded of the top four pairs from Chinese Taipei – the only team with 4 currently in the world’s top 15 – but they have the highest average age of the four.

For Tsuneyama, Liao, and Su, the supporters from Indonesia added to the atmosphere and did not ruin their concentration to the match.  Liao said, “We feel that Indonesian supporters supported us a lot in our match with Boe and Mogensen and it gave us the spirit to win the match.”

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