No medals for RI shuttlers in London
Bitter end: Indonesia's Tontowi Ahmad (right) and Liliyana Natsir (left) play against Denmark's Joachim Fischer and Christinna Pedersen in the mixed doubles badminton bronze medal match at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Friday, in London. Denmark won the bronze medal. (AP/Andres Leighton)
Indonesia’s shuttlers have come home empty handed for the first time in their participation in the Summer Olympics when Denmark’s mixed doubles pair Joachim Fischer and Christinna Pedersen dashed the hopes of Liliyana Natsir and Tontowi Ahmad to bring home the consolation bronze medal.
The Danes beat the Indonesian pair 21-12, 21-12, erasing badminton’s golden tradition, the only sport capable of contributing gold medals since badminton inclusion in the Olympics.
The Indonesia pair managed to win the first point in the first game and then allowed the Danes to go on a prolonged offensive to reach 7-1. Tontowi and Liliyana made several unforced errors by hitting the net when returning the Denmark shuttlers’ flicks and smashes.
Fischer made several hard-smashes, both at Tontowi and Liliyana, most of which were not returned. The left-handed Fischer brought Denmark to an 11-4 scoreline.
Some intelligently placed shots from Tontowi turned out to be not enough as Fischer and Pedersen won the first game 21-12 in 18 minutes.
The tempo of the second game was just as frenetic as the first. Liliyana and Tontowi managed to win the first three points, but the Danes leveled proceedings at 3-3.
The Danish pair then raced into an 11-4 lead, wrapping up the second game 21-12 within 22 minutes.
Returning home with no medals represents a second blow to Indonesia’s shuttlers after the women’s doubles duo Meiliana Jauhari and Greysia Polii were disqualified for allegedly throwing their match against South Koreans Ha Jung-eun and Kim Min-jung, and have been expelled from the Games along with a South Korean pair and a Chinese pair. (fzm)