Tue, 22 Aug 2000

Hariyanto resigns from national team

JAKARTA (JP): The 1995 world badminton champion Hariyanto Arbi has resigned from the national team due to his poor performance in international tournaments over recent years.

Hari, as he is popularly known, said in a telephone interview that he made the decision due to his recent weak physical condition.

"I have been injured for quite some time and it's really difficult to recover enough to reach my peak form. I have to accept this so that the Badminton Association of Indonesia (PBSI) can focus its attention more on the youngsters," he said on Monday.

"I don't want to become a burden to PBSI as it has to spend money to finance me if I'm still in the Indonesian Badminton Center."

Hari sparked controversy last year after winning the Singapore Open title and saying that he would move to the neighboring country after retirement.

"No, I'll stay in Indonesia. In my resignation letter, I asked for PBSI's permission to allow me to continue practicing at the center. At least I can be a practice partner for the youngsters.

"I can't just quit. Whenever I'm ready, I'll compete for a tournament."

Hari, who married long-time girlfriend Wiwiek Wiral in February, claimed that he did not have any plans for business at the moment.

"I don't have any ideas to start a business."

Hari's final performance was at the Thomas Cup championships in May where he failed to play well after suffering a hamstring injury during training at the Putra Stadium in Kuala Lumpur.

PBSI secretary general Leo Chandra Wiranata said that Hari's request was approved by PBSI chairman Subagyo Hadisiswoyo to officially resign on Aug. 21.

"Hari said in his letter that he felt incapable of reaching his peak form as he did several years ago. He wanted to quit."

Speaking about the best moment of his career, Hari mentioned winning the 1995 World Championships in Lausanne, Switzerland, as the most impressive moment of his life.

However, he regretted his loss in the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Georgia.

"I was over confident and I thought that my path to victory was easy. I hope it won't happen to my junior Taufik Hidayat. He must be aware of his enemies because he's the hunted one." (yan)