Indonesia survives first test in Thomas and Uber Cup
By Primastuti Handayani
KUALA LUMPUR (JP): Indonesian teams won both matches in the Thomas and Uber Cup championships at the Putra Indoor Stadium here Thursday. The men's team had no trouble thrashing Sweden 5-0 while the women's team had to struggle before taming dark horse Japan 3-2.
Men's singles ace, Hendrawan, world number two, opened his team's victory by defeating Thomas Johansson 15-5, 17-14 in 32 minutes.
Starting the first game easily, Hendrawan started the second game shakily. Both tied 7-7 in long rallies with close net work from Hendrawan and hard smashes from Johansson.
Hendrawan narrowly led 14-13 before the towering Swede managed to force a deuce. But Hendrawan -- rallying on a combination of netting, offense and defense -- was able to grab the remaining three points.
"The win was a good start but we still have a long journey to repeat our last victory two years ago. I won easily in the first game because Johansson had a problem controlling the court. But in the second game it was a bit difficult as he changed his style of play."
First doubles Candra Wijaya and Tony Gunawan, world number one, barely sweated in their match against Par-Gunnar Jonsson and Peter Axelsson to win 15-5, 15-1.
"We are committed to give our best in every match. We are eager to contribute one point to the team."
Third singles Taufik Hidayat ensured the team's victory by defeating Rasmus Wengberg 15-3, 15-9.
"As the team was leading 2-0, I was highly motivated to contribute one point as we wanted to ensure a 5-0 whitewash. Rasmus usually plays well with good defense. But today he played under form."
The 1996 Olympics champion Ricky Subagja and Rexy Mainaky gave a free lesson to Henrik Andersson and Frederik Bergstrom winning 15-4, 15-3.
Marlev Mainaky completed Indonesia's triumph with an easy triumph of 15-2, 15-4 over Martin Hagberg.
Team manager Sumaryono said: "We will play all out in every match. We won't change the winning team as they still have time to recover."
Sweden's team manager Claes Johansson said: "Indonesia is a strong team as they are good in all sectors specially in the doubles."
In the Uber Cup, Indonesia's first women's singles Lidya Djaelawidjaja suffered a humiliating defeat to Yasuko Mizui 5-11, 5-11 in 29 minutes.
"Playing in the first match as the first singles really made me nervous. I couldn't sleep last night. I didn't want to repeat my poor form in the Uber Cup qualification in New Delhi but ...," she sighed. "I feel ashamed to my teammates."
First pair of Elysa Nathanael and Deyana Lomban tied 1-1 after eliminating Yoshiko Iwata and Haruko Matsuda 15-8, 15-6 in a tough 40 minute match.
"I was very tense as we were 0-1 behind. Moreover we lost to them in the first round of the All England. When entering the court, I just thought positively that I will have a better chance here," Deyana said.
Second singles Ellen Angelina added one more point after easily beating Takako Ida 11-1, 11-5.
Second doubles Etty Tantri and Cynthia Tuwankotta managed to secure Indonesia's position in the group by overwhelming Chikako Nakayama and Naomi Murakami 15-4, 15-13.
Coach Imelda Wigoeno said: "We had an advantage by the absence of Japan's second singles Kanako Yonekura. Our key player is Ellen, we really expected her to win."
Indonesia bt Sweden 5-0: Hendrawan bt Thomas Johansson 15-5, 17-14; Candra Wijaya/Tony Gunawan bt Par-Gunnar Jonsson/Peter Axelsson 15-5, 15-1; Taufik Hidayat bt Rasmus Wengberg 15-3, 15-9; Ricky Subagja/Rexy Mainaky bt Henrik Andersson/Frederik Bergstrom 15-4, 15-3; Marlev Mainaky bt Martin Hagberg 15-2, 15-4
China bt England 4-1: Xia Xuanze bt Colin Haugton 15-2, 15-3; Zhang Jun/Yu Jinhao lost to Nathan Robertson/Simon Archer 15-10, 16-17, 13-15; Ji Xinpeng bt Darren Hall 15-7, 15-10; Zhang Wei/Liu Yong bt Chris Hunt/Julian Robertson 15-6, 15-8; Lou Yigang bt Michael Edge 15-6, 15-7
Indonesia bt Japan 3-2: Lidya Djaelawidjaja lost to Yasuko Mizui 5-11, 4-11; Elysa Nathanael/Deyana Lomban bt Yoshiko Iwata/Haruko Matsuda 15-8, 15-6; Ellen Angelina bt Takako Ida 11-1, 11-5; Etty Tantri/Cynthia Tuwankotta bt Chikako Nakayama/Naomi Murakami 15-4, 15-13; Yuli Marfuah lost to Miho Tanaka 8-11, 7-11
Denmark bt Malaysia 4-1: Camilla Martin bt Ng Mee Fen 11-0, 11-4; Helene Kirkegaard/Rikke Olsen bt Lim Pek Siah/Joanna SL Quay 15-9, 15-4; Mette Sorensen bt Wong Miew Kheng 11-9, 11-1; Ann-Lou Jorgensen/Mette Schjoldager lost to Ang Li Peng/Chor Hoi Yee 8-15, 1-15; Mette Pedersen bt Woon Sze Mei 11-3, 11-4