The Jakarta Post
Indonesian badminton player and Olympic gold medalist Tontowi Ahmad, 32, has officially announced his retirement from the sport after a 15-year career.
"It's time to say goodbye to something I've done for more than half of my life. Something that had made my life more colorful," Tontowi said in an Instagram post on Sunday.
ini saatnya mengucapkan selamat tinggal untuk sesuatu yang saya tekuni lebih dari setengah umur saya,yang membuat hidupku menjadi lebih ber warna,kadang susah kadang senang tapi saya bangga dengan apa yang sudah saya capai ,dimana saya bisa meraih puncak prestasi yang saya dan orangtua juga keluarga harapkan. memang saya mengharapkan saya bisa menyudahi ini di puncak podium tapi inilah hidup tidak selalu apa yang kita inginkan bisa tercapai seperti situasi dan kondisi saat ini.tapi apapun yang terjadi saya saya sangat bersyukur bisa berada di posisi saya sekarang ini. saya juga mau berterimakasih untuk semua yang sudah mendukung karir saya di bukutangkis selama ini yang tidak bisa saya sebut satu per satu. dan sekarang waktunya saya melanjutkan hidup untuk meraih kesuksesan di bidang lain 🙏🏾 #goodbye #retired #athlete #lifemustgoon💪 #thanksforallthesupport
He said he felt grateful, regretting only that he was not able to end his career with one final victory.
"I had hoped about ending my career on top of a podium but that's life – you can’t always get what you want,” he said. "It's time to go on with my life and to find success in other fields."
Tontowi's retirement is a great loss to Indonesian badminton, as he and his partner Liliyana Natsir, who retired last year, are considered the country's finest mixed double athletes.
Tontowi became a professional badminton player in 2005 and his career skyrocketed after he was partnered with Liliyana in 2010. Soon after, the pair won their first major championship with a gold medal at the Southeast Asian Games in 2011.
During their time playing together, Liliyana and Tontowi amassed a collection of prestigious titles, including three consecutive All England Open championships from 2012 to 2014 and two BWF World Championships in 2013 and 2017. The pair also won mixed doubles gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Richard said Tontowi had previously notified the Indonesian Badminton Association (PBSI) about his retirement.
"He had told me about the retirement plan a while back and he had officially announced it to the PBSI. It's his decision. Every athlete has their own retirement time, so we must accept it," Richard said on Sunday.
Richard hinted that Tontowi might focus on business post-retirement.
"He told me that he had a bungalow for rent in Jepara, Central Java,” he said. “It is a business he manages with his in-laws, so maybe he would focus on that.”