Indonesia counting on three gold medals in KL Sea Games badminton
"We are ready...and ready for anyone to strike golds in badminton," - a bold and strong message of confidence from Indonesia's badminton team manager Susi Susanti to the KL Sea Games next month.
The 29th edition of the biennial games will be held in the Malaysia capital city of Kuala Lumpur fromAug 19-30.
"We are aiming for three gold medals and possibly four from the shuttle sport," said Susi Susanti, a household name in the badminton world who won the women's singles gold at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics.
Indonesia's targeted golds in Kuala Lumpur are the men's team, where Indonesia are the defending champions, the men's doubles, the women's doubles and the mixed doubles.
Susi said: "The women's doubles pair of Greysia Polii-Apriani Rahayu, received a timely boost for the (Sea) Games when they won the Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold in Bangkok recently.
"This pair is in form. En-route to the title in Bangkok they beat several other strong Thai pairs and this has boosted their confidence."
Susi is also counting on the women's team to deliver although defending champions Thailand not only look strong but are favourites to retain the title in Kuala Lumpur. The Thais are the top seeds while Indonesia are seeded second.
"We can qualify for the gold medal match and probably play the Thais in the final. I believe it will be a keenly contested final if my prediction comes true."
In the same breath, Susi, however still picked the Thais as 51 per cent favourites as they have several players in the top 20 BWF rankings.
The Thais women open their team campaign with a bye in the quarter-finals and will face the winners of the Singapore-Vietnam match.
Indonesia are in the bottom half and take on Laos in their opening match
with the winners crossing path with the winners of the Malaysia-Myanmar match.
At the last Sea Games in Singapore in 2015 the Indonesians also won the men's double through Angga Pratama-Ricky Karanda Suwardi and the mixed doubles through Praveen Jordan-Debby Susanti.