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Indonesian official not expect Taufik Hidayat to retain Olympic gold

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Category: Badminton News Published: 31 July 2008
Written by BadmintonPlanet.com Hits: 781
BEIJING, July 31 (Xinhua) -- Though Indonesia has set gold medal target in its traditionally-strong badminton at the Beijing Olympics, the defending men's singles champion Taufik Hidayat is not expected to retain the title because of his physical condition. "Taufik has fully recovered now, and I heard he went back to the training venue in Jakarta yesterday. However, I am not sure if he will come to Beijing with his best physical condition," Lukman Niode, the deputy chef de mission of the Indonesian delegation, told Xinhua here on Thursday.

    "We just hope he can do his best at the Olympics, but Lin Dan of China is quite strong in the men's singles," he added.

    Hidayat got a flu one week ago, which set doubts on his future at the Olympics. Niode said that Hidayat would arrive in Beijing next Monday.

    Badminton has been the shoulder to keep Indonesia's position on the medal tally since 1992 Barcelona Olympics. At the 2004 Athens Olympics, the Indonesian team pocketed one gold from Hidayat.

    "Hopefully, we can win gold medals in the men's doubles and the mixed doubles, but China and South Korea are very competitive, so it's really hard to predict how many gold medals we can win from the badminton events."

    The country's female weightlifters have made their mark in recent Games, proving that badminton is not the only sport in Indonesia.

    Raema Lisa Rumbewas claimed silver medals at both the 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games, earning her medals in the 48kg and 53kg weight categories, respectively.

    "Raema Lisa Rumbewas will compete in the women's 53kg class thistime. We hope she and her teammate will win medals for our country," Niode said.

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