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Monday, February 25, 2008

China vs. Indonesia - A Better Chance Perhaps?

This is part 2 of a 3 part series on the Thomas Cup's predictions. Part 1 here


Men's Singles 1
Lin Dan vs. Taufik Hidayat
Although Sony Dwi Kuncoro is rated higher than Taufik, I think Indonesia will field Taufik instead of Sony. Indonesia will want to reserve Sony for later matches, as Sony might have a better chance against Chen Jin or Bao Chunlai. Furthermore, Taufik is one of the players in the world that genuinely have to ability to beat Lin Dan. The nature of the tie, whether it will be a China whitewash or tight encounter, will rest on the outcome of this game.

Men's Doubles 1
Cai Yun/Fu Haifeng vs. Markis Kido/Hendra Setiawan
Cai and Fu have currently worked themselves in a tricky position. No one is prepared to dismiss the ex world champions yet, but no one is banking on them either. The Indonesian World Number 1s on the other hand, are peaking at the moment. Too soon perhaps? Both of their performances in the All England and Swiss Opens will provide a more accurate indication as to where both of them stand.

Men's Singles 2
Chen Jin vs. Sony Dwi Kuncoro
A must win for Indonesia. Sony and Taufik are interchangable, but as mentioned earlier, I think the Indonesian coaches will hope that Taufik can pull off a win, while Sony beats Chen Jin, not an impossible feat. If Indonesia were to win this tie, they would win it here, with a 3-0 triumph.

Men's Doubles 2
Luluk Hadiyanto/Alvent Yulianto vs. Guo Zhendong/Xie Zhongbo
This will be the backup plan for INdonesia. If one of the abovementioned players were to lose, the responsibility would then fall upon Luluk and Alvent to beat the newer and lesser known Chinese pair of Guo and Xie. However, if Luluk and Alvent were to lose this tie, then all is almost lost.

Men's Singles 3
Simon Santoso vs. Bao Chunlai
Bao, in my opinion is technically superior to Simon. However, Simon has the 'suprise' and 'wow' factor that might just pull of this match. Very shaky game that could go either way. Will Bao's skill or lack of maturity show through?

Overall, on current conditions, Indonesia have a better chance at depriving Chinese of their 3rd straight title.

Stay tuned for the last part of this series.


Unknown said...

Loved the first instalment. Just a note on player order.

The team order has to follow world rankings in terms of player strength so the first singles has to have a higher ranking then the second singles.

Taufik can only play first singles if his ranking is higher then Sony's at whatever the cutoff date ibf has set. The only other way is if Sony does not play & by default Taufik is the highest ranking INA singles player left.

I played around w/ the same idea & suggested Peter Gade should play 3rd singles. But alas not to be.


vchi said...

derek: I don't think the team order has to follow world rankings. I remember in the 2002 Thomas Cup, China kept their team a secret until the last moment during the semifinals against Malaysia. Li Yongbo was tempting Malaysia by saying: We will field Chen Hong in MS1. (He ended up fielding Xia Xuanze)... I am not sure though... anyone can give clarification on this?