TEMPO Interactive, Macau:The title of champion finally goes to Taufik Hidayat this year. Taufik, who was the number four favorite, became the winner at the Macau Open’s men’s single badminton tournament after defeating Malaysia’s number one player Lee Chong Wei, with a final score of 21 -19, 21 – 15 at the Tap Seac Multisport Pavilion Stadium yesterday.
Taufik’s victory fulfilled the hopes of the Badminton Association of Indonesia (PBSI) coach, Christian Hadinata. “If Taufik wins, Indonesia will complete its collection of champion titles,” he told Tempo last Saturday. Indonesia has won all three previous tournaments. “By winning all the tournaments, Indonesia will continue to be taken seriously,” Christian said.
In three previous tournaments, Indonesia always took two champion titles. Simon Santoso won the Taiwan Open in the men’s single while Devin Lahardi/Lita Nurlita in the mixed double’s. At the Japan Open, Sony Dwi Kuncoro won the men’s single category, while Muhammad Rijal/Vita Marissa in the mixed double’s. Then in China, Sony Dwi Kuncoro again took the champion title and Markis Kido/Hendra Setiawan won the men’s double.
Taufik’s victory was a response to a challenge thrown by Christian. He said the Macau tournament was the moment for Taufik to prove that he could still compete against younger players.
“This is really good to motivate him for the future,” Christian said. The win is important for Taufik after he was defeated in the quarter finals at two Super Series tournaments at the Japan Open and the China Masters.
Taufik Hidayat became the only Indonesian badminton player to go to the final round after other Indonesian players lost in this US$ 120.000 prize tournament.
In the mixed double number, China’s Xu Chen/Zhao Yunlei defeated Hong Kong’s Yohan Hadikusumo Wiratama/Chau Hoi Wah by 21-15 21- 16. Meanwhile in women’s single, Hong Kong’s veteran player Zhou Mi took her second title two weeks in a row after beating Malaysia’s Julia Pei Xian Wong by 21-13 21-19. Last week Zhou Mi won the China Master tournament.
Malaysia was consoled after the men’s double Koo Kien Keat/Tan Boon Heong beat Taiwan’s Fang Chieh Min/Lee Sheng Mu by 21-16 21-18. Chinese player Yunlei took her second title in the tournament, after she and Cheng Shu won the women’s double championship, defeating fellow citizens Ma Jin/Wang Xiaoli by 21-15 21-18.