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Shuttlers Eye Success in Singapore (pic)

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Category: Badminton News Published: 08 June 2009
Written by Hits: 913

The nation’s top players are ready to put their Sudirman Cup disappointment behind them to focus on the Singapore Super Series, which begins today.
The world’s top-ranked men’s doubles pair, Markis Kido, left, and Hendra Setiawan, in action against Japan’s Noriyasu Hirata and Hirokatsu Hashimoto in the Sudirman Cup last month.
The Indonesian team failed to reach the final of the renowned Sudirman Cup last month after losing 3-1 to South Korea in the semifinals in Guangzhou, China. It hasn’t performed well in the Super Series either, winning only one title this year after four legs of badminton’s most prestigious series.

Indonesia is determined to end that woeful run in Singapore and Markis Kido, one half of the world’s top-ranked men’s pair, is ready to play his part.

“I’m confident now because the pain from my injury is gone,” Markis said, referring to the left-knee injury that has hampered him recently. “This time [the injury] won’t affect me.”

Markis and Hendra Setiawan played at the Asian Championships in South Korea last April, where Markis won his first title of the year. It was also his first tournament back after being out of commission for two months to rehabilitate his knee.

“[The injury] was caused by my body weight so now I need to lose a few kilos,” Markis said, despite the fact that he has recently shed four kilograms. “I feel a lot better and I’m ready to win a few tournaments.”

Markis and Hendra are the top seeds in the $200,000 Singapore Super Series, where they will face Michael Fuchs and Ingo Kindervter of Germany in the opener.

Nova Widianto and Liliyana Natsir, the top seeds in mixed doubles, will see action against Chen Hung Ling and Chou Chia Chi in the first round. Fellow Indonesians Devin Lahardi and Lita Nurlita will face Chris Adcock and Gabrielle White of England.

A victory for Devin and Lita will pit the duo against former national player Flandy Limpele and Anastasia Russkikh of Russia.

Another Indonesian pair, the No. 7 seed Muhammad Ahsan and Bona Septano, opens its bid against Shintaro Ikeda and Shuichi Sakamoto of Japan, while Yonathan Suryatama Dasuki and Rian Sukmawan take on Jorrit de Ruitter and Jurgen Wouters of The Netherlands.

Meanwhile, Indonesia will pin its hopes in the women’s singles event on Adrianti Firdasari, the team’s lone entry after the country’s No. 1-ranked player Maria Kristin Yulianti pulled out of the tournament because of a right-knee injury.

“My knee is okay now but I want to focus on the Indonesian Open Super Series [on June 16-21],” said Maria, who played in the India Gold Grand Prix in March and last month’s Sudirman Cup.

Adrianti will play against an unranked opponent in the first round on Wednesday, with a chance to meet rising star Saina Nehwal of India in the next round.

Sony Dwi Kuncoro is expected to have an easy time in the men’s singles when he takes on unseeded Arvind Bhat of India, while No. 6 seed Simon Santoso will face an unranked opponent.

In women’s doubles, No. 7 seed Shendy Puspa Irawati and Meiliana Jauhari will battle Mizuki Fujii and Reika Kakiiwa of Japan, while Nitya Krishinda Maheswari and Greysia Polii will take on Jang Ye Na and Kim Mi Young of Korea.

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