Indonesia Open: Daddy in No Hurry to Leave

On a second straight day of setbacks for Indonesia’s men’s singles – with Jonatan Christie falling – there was Hendra Setiawan, Mr Longevity himself, making his way into the second round of his 24th consecutive Indonesia Open.

The 39-year-old Setiawan and his 36-year-old partner Mohammad Ahsan were comfortable winners over Supak Jomkoh and Kittinupong Kedren after falling behind in the opening game; the calm they exuded contrasted somewhat with the frenetic nature of Christie’s loss, where the third seed looked a mess as he made a series of wild errors in going down to Leong Jun Hao.

For Leong it was a dream second week on the trot, for he had beaten Anthony Sinisuka Ginting in Singapore, and he managed to stay on the task after Christie overhauled a sizeable lead that would have given the Malaysian a straight-games win. But in the third he never relinquished the lead he’d set.

Leong Jun Hao

“I’m happy that I could beat Indonesian players recently (Ginting and Christie). Maybe they’re preparing for the Olympics, and every player  has their has ups and downs. I managed to do my best and I also give myself credit,” said Leong.

It could have been an even better day for Malaysia had Roy King Yap and Valeree Siow capitalised on their 18-14 advantage against fifth seeds Jiang Zhen Bang/Wei Ya Xin, but the Chinese shot ahead with seven points in a row.

The world No.32 was one of the surprise packages of the Thomas Cup, and has built on his performances since then.

“I have found my consistency and confidence. From the Thomas Cup onwards I’ve been getting more confident. I hope I can keep continuing.

“For sure the crowd and fans are very special. I was leading in the second and they cheered Jonatan back. Even when I was leading in the third I managed to keep myself calm and keep thinking one point at a time.”

As for Setiawan, playing alongside many players who weren’t even born when he was at his first Indonesia Open, it was all about “commitment”.

“It’s all about the commitment to myself. I didn’t think too much about how many years I’ve played here, but I tell myself that I can still play. I feel so happy to play all these youngsters.”

The two-time winner and his partner kept their long-term plans open-ended. They haven’t set a deadline yet.

“Playing at home is always special. We don’t know if this is our last Indonesia Open. Let’s see. We don’t think too far ahead… we just think of this tournament.”

WHAT THEY SAID

“We played the right strategy, but at crucial points our consistency was not good enough. We lacked a bit in mentality at the end. We learnt much from them, and we saw the difference between us and them. This match will boost our confidence.” – Valeree Siow, after blowing a 18-14 lead against Jiang Zheng Bang/Wei Ya Xin

“It’s our first Super 1000, and it was great to play this tournament. Right now we’re frustrated because we had game points in the second game. But we learn and it was good to play very good players. Maybe next time we’ll get one game or a match.” – Koceila Mammeri, after he and Medel came close to taking a game against Kenya Mitsuhashi/Hiroki Okamura

→Results (Day 2)

→Order of Play (Day 3)

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