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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tournament Analysis Beijing Olympics (Part 3)

Can badminton ex-powerhouses Indonesia stamp their mark in Beijing like they have in the recent World Championships?

Realistically, currently, Indonesia can only hope to get medals from 4 events, as their Women’s Singles are not as strong as before, in the days of Susi Susanti and Mia Audina.

Men’s Single
Taufik Hidayat will be gunning to be the first person to claim 2 consecutive Olympic Men’s Singles Gold Medals. However, the question remains whether he can shrug off calls of his inconsistencies and weak stamina. Nevertheless, he is one of the main forces to be reckoned with, along with Lee Chong Wei and Lin Dan for the Gold. Sony and Simon seem to be showing a marked improvement in their game, and might be surprise medalist in the games.

Men’s Doubles
Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan appear to be Indonesia’s strongest bet, but again, it would not be easy with stiff competition from Malaysian reigning world number 1 Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong and home ground favorites Cai Yun and Fu Haifeng. However, the reigning World Champions are certainly up to the task; they are able to beat any pair in the world (although never beating Koo and Tan, and losing 4 times in a row) on a good day. In my opinion, the race for the gold in Men’s Doubles will be the most interesting event because no one pair has really stamped their mark, and no one pair has really been the hot favorites.

Women’s Doubles
China Masters Champions Natsir and Marrisa could pull off a win here, but it will be hard to battle through Li Yongbo’s girls. With Yang/Wei. Zhang/Yang and Gao/Huang all strong contenders, Natsir and Marrisa have to pull off a lot to even get a medal. However, they have done it in China Masters, why not here? Natsir and Marrisa have to show that their win in China was not a fluke, but they have yet to produced results since their triumph in Chengdu.

Mixed Doubles
With 2 strong pairs, Natsir/Widianto and Limpele/Marrisa, Indonesia seems to have a chance against the Chinese powerhouse. Gao/Zheng and Xie/Zhang are extremely strong opposition in Indonesia’s hopes to claim this title. Reigning World Champions Natsir and Widianto will be all out to defeat Gao and Zheng, but it will be very hard, as Gao and Zhang look invincible. Limpele and Marrisa will be out to prove that they have the ability to win their first medal in an Olympics, but again, opposition will be stiff.

Is Indonesia capable of pulling off a breakthrough here?

For earlier parts:

The Badminton Blog - Predictions in Beijing PART 1

The Badminton Blog - Predictions in Beijing PART 2

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