Mon, 09 Oct 2000

Taipei steals one match from Indonesia

JAKARTA (JP): Chinese Taipei spoiled Indonesia's dream of a landslide victory as it managed to steal one point thanks to Cheng Wei-Jen who defeated Hendri Susilo Pramono 6-4, 6-2 in the reverse singles matches Sunday at the Kemayoran tennis center.

Earlier, Suwandi had to work hard to overcome Tsai Chia-yen to win 6-3, 5-7, 6-1 ensuring a 4-0 lead.

Indonesia is promoted to Davis Cup Group I Asia Oceania zone after its 3-0 decisive win in the singles matches Friday and doubles match Saturday.

On Friday, Suwandi beat Cheng 6-4, 6-2, 6-2 while Hendri defeated Tsai 6-3, 7-6 (7-3), 6-3. Indonesia ensured its victory as Bonit Wiryawan and Sulistyo Wibowo overcame Cheng and Chen Wei-Ju 6-3, 6-4, 6-4.

Indonesia is scheduled to meet Uzbekistan next year but the host country is yet to be determined.

"I'm returning all the balls well. I read his serves -- where he wanted to place the ball. That's the way," Cheng told a post- match conference.

"The point means a lot to me and the team as well. But it's not going to make any difference."

Meanwhile, Hendri admitted that Cheng was a good player.

"He was so confident. I played my game but he was better at being able to block my balls," he said. "When I tried to rally, my balls were just simply shorter than his. If I played close balls, he played even more aggressively."

Cheng, who is taking physical education as his major at college back home, said: "I played more comfortably today because it's my third match today. Besides, Hendri's type is just what I like of a serving volley player. We can't find many of these players nowadays."

Speaking on his win, Suwandi said: "I didn't give enough pressure in the second set. I also made unforced errors by not being careful enough. But I managed to improve in the third set."

Tsai admitted Suwandi was in better shape than him.

"Suwandi played really well today. Besides, we didn't have many tournaments to play in the last two months," said Tsai, who is in military service until next year back home.

Coach Deddy Prasetyo said with the 4-1 result the team had reached the target although "missed the anticipated landslide victory."

"Our target was only to win the final match to secure our place in Group I. But when we made it to 3-0 on Saturday, we expected to win all the matches," he said.

"The Indonesian Davis Cup team will soon resume its schedule of training sessions and tournaments. There will be tournaments in the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. The problem is we don't have enough money to send all the players."

"Should we have to play the match in Uzbekistan, we will have a special acclimatization session although actually the players have been accustomed to chilly weather when they played in the European and Japanese tournaments," said Deddy. (nvn)