Asian Games: Indonesia beats Japan to reach men’s team badminton final
Callistasia Anggun Wijaya
The Jakarta Post
Indonesia overcame Asian powerhouse Japan 3-1 in the semifinals of men’s team badminton at Istora Senayan in Jakarta on Tuesday, setting it up for a match against China in the final on Wednesday.
Indonesia had a rough start to the day, as Anthony Ginting was defeated by world champion Kento Momota 21-14, 14-21, 16-21.
In the first game, Anthony maintained a strong defense and made excellent smashes, making it hard for Momota to steal points. However, Momota bounced back and seized the second and third games.
Anthony said it was his mindset that failed him.
"I became familiar with [Momota’s] style in the third game, but it was my mindset [that lost me the game]. I didn't play with full concentration," Anthony said after the match.
Momota said the drift badly affected his performance in the first game and that his team helped him to recover from the slow start.
"When I trailed him 15-18 [in the third game], I looked at my teammates and they kept giving me support. I'm satisfied that I won this game," Momota said.
Indonesia equaled the overall team score after world champions Marcus Gideon and Kevin Sukamuljo handily beat Takeshi Kamura and Keigo Sonoda 21-18, 21-12 in front of a raucous home crowd.
Marcus said he saw that his opponents were nervous during the match, a factor that contributed to their loss. "They seemed nervous. Maybe they were distracted by the noise made by Indonesian supporters.”
Meanwhile, in an outing that redeemed his performance in the semifinals, Jonathan Christie played strong against Kenta Nishimoto, winning 21-15, 21-19.
Fajar Alfian and Muhammad Rian Ardianto were the heroes of the day, as they clinched Indonesia's spot in the final in dominating fashion, beating Takuto Inoue and Yuki Kaneko 21-10, 21-10.
Youth and Sports Minister Imam Nahrawi, Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Wiranto and Public Works and Housing Minister Basuki Hadimuljono were in attendance for the match.
China, Indonesia's opponent in the final, beat Chinese Taipei 3-1 in its men's team semifinal matches.
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