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Thread: TAUFIK: Power, Glory and Fury
08-01-2006, 08:47 PM #1
TAUFIK: Power, Glory and Fury
From Jakarta Post 1 AUgust 2006
Taufik Hidayat -- the power, the glory and the fury
Budi A. Sanusi, Contributor, Jakarta
When people talk about international-level Indonesian shuttlers, one name invariably comes up tops -- Taufik Hidayat.
Taufik has done the nation proud many times by bagging a impressive slew of international honors, including Olympic and World Championship gold medals.
Most recently, he was named Player of the Year 2006 by the International Badminton Federation and has twice been proclaimed Indonesia's Sportsman of the Year.
The only prestigious title that has eluded him so far is the All England, the world's oldest badminton tournament for singles players. He has come close to winning it twice only to lose in the finals on both occasions.
The 25-year-old is widely acclaimed as an icon of the game, winning kudos and accolades from the international badminton community for what he has achieved on the playing court.
"When he is in his element and in an uncompromising mood, nobody in the world can beat him, even if he plays against two rivals across the net," Indra Gunawan, a respected doubles-player-cum-coach, once said. "He can only be beaten by a rival who consistently attacks and attacks from the onset. But I doubt if there is any such player in the world."
Taufik has a rich repertoire of strokes: deadly cross-court and backhand smashes, subtle net play and acrobatic returns from between his legs. He is not the type of player relying merely on speed and power, but one who molds these two elements into a cohesive and synchronized unit of attack and defense.
He has provided a stellar example for aspiring Indonesian shuttlers. Ask several budding players who their idol is, then the answer will come in chorus: Taufik Hidayat. So popular is he, that some quarters have anointed him "Indonesia's David Beckham".
In some respects, Taufik is "our Becks" -- he has good looks, is always striving to do his best on court, and manages to be both cool and flamboyant.
But unlike Beckham, Taufik, a son of a humble vegetable farmer in Pengalengan, a hilly resort district about 200 kilometers southeast of Jakarta, has some qualities not found in the personality of the elegant former England skipper.
Taufik is controversial, enigmatic, unpredictable and at times temperamental player, who once lived the life of a playboy. OK, perhaps he's not so different from Becks after all.
The shuttlers' trysts with soap opera actresses and pop singers were well-known before he settled down and married Armidianti Gumelar, the daughter of Agum Gumelar, chairman of the National Sports Council and a former cabinet minister.
Like Beckham, Taufik is a newsmaker, with his alleged indiscretions never failing to grab media headlines.
Only recently, a woman claimed Taufik was the biological father of her five-year-old son. Taufik denied the accusation and challenged the woman to prove it in court. The case died down with the woman dropped her claim.
To some officials at the Indonesian Badminton Association, Taufik is notorious as a rebel. He certainly has the guts to speak his mind when he sees things not going not to his liking. He once refused to be trained by former world champion Icuk Sugiarto and instead wanted to be handled by a coach of his own choice, Mulyo Handoyo, threatening to move abroad if his demand was not met.
Occasionally hot-tempered, Taufik was once involved in a street brawl with the driver of a brother of Vice President Jusuf Kalla after their cars brushed against each other.
He also hit a spectator with his racket in a fit of anger after the man booed him during an exhibition match in Bandung. These are just a few illustrations of how explosive he can be.
But people will see a sharply different Taufik when he plays in major Grand Prix events. He is calculated, cool, composed and collected, rarely lodging a protest with the referee or the linesmen.
To some, Taufik may be a spoiled brat or an enfant-terrible, but to his adoring fans he is a thinking player, a superstar or even a genius. Whatever he is, there is no denying that Taufik has livened up our national sport with his skills, color and volatile personality.
Taufik has joined the ranks of badminton greats and legends, his name being mentioned in the same breath as the legendary Finn Kobbero, Erlands Kops and Morten Frost Hansen of Denmark; and fellow Indonesians Tan Joe Hock, Ferry Sonneville, Rudy Hartono, Christian Hadinata and Liem Swie King.
Joe Hock was the first Indonesian shuttler to win the All England way back in 1959 when he beat Sonneville in a memorable all-Indonesian final at the famous Wembley arena in London. Both are acknowledged as pioneers in Indonesia's monumental rise from minnow status to the ranks of a powerhouse in world badminton.
Rudy won the All England title a record eight times, seven of them in a row. His amazing feat is unprecedented in the annals of the tournament's history, earning him a special chapter in the Guiness Book of Records.
Now comes the most intriguing question: who is Indonesia's or, for that matter, the world's greatest shuttler of all time? Performance-wise, many will certainly name Rudy, with Taufik coming a close second.
As world soccer remains divided in determining the world's greatest footballer of all time, with one camp choosing Argentina's Diego Maradona and the other picking Brazil's Pele, world badminton, too, it seems, is split into two camps: Is it Rudy or Taufik? The debate will no doubt continue to rage.
But it is way too early to make our minds up yet, with Taufik at least four or five years away from retiring. For all he has done for the game, on and off court, one thing is for certain. Taufik deserves three titles -- the bad boy, the glamor boy and the golden boy -- of Indonesian sports.
08-01-2006, 08:57 PM #2Originally Posted by indra
08-01-2006, 09:13 PM #3
Well Indra, now you know what a few of us mean when we say that Rudy Hartono is the greatest of them all so far.
The following quote is from the author's write-up:
"Now comes the most intriguing question: who is Indonesia's or, for that matter, the world's greatest shuttler of all time? Performance-wise, many will certainly name Rudy, with Taufik coming a close second."
And if you count Rudy's off-court contributions, he is even greater as he has represented Indonesia at the IBF Council and is now heading PBSI's high performance development programme, if I'm not wrong.
08-01-2006, 10:07 PM #4
Thanks Indra.. What a great article..
Kept its neutrality and accurate description of Taufik!
However I still think he is the best currently! So skillful...
08-02-2006, 06:17 AM #5
Huh honestly, all the praise is so clearly visible that it's not even sane anymore. I mean, I don't remember Taufik becoming a god.
Besides, the writer clearly brings up only the good points, part of which are really vague and false.
Hm I'll get blamed for what I just said.
08-02-2006, 07:15 AM #6Originally Posted by Chire
This is an accurate article about Taufik's career..
08-02-2006, 07:37 AM #7Originally Posted by indra
08-02-2006, 07:52 AM #8Originally Posted by indra
08-02-2006, 08:08 AM #9Originally Posted by Simp84
08-02-2006, 08:12 AM #10Originally Posted by Chire
I am not sure if Rudi also got so much praise and accolades in his heydays like TH is getting now... maybe our senior BF members can tell more. A considerable period of TH's career is still remaining. No doubt that his play is always very entertaining. I hope he keeps performing like he has always done.
08-02-2006, 08:16 AM #11Originally Posted by taufik-ist
When one player wants a very serious and tough training, then I think this is employed.. pretty much energy-sapping though..
08-02-2006, 08:17 AM #12Originally Posted by badmad
08-02-2006, 08:54 AM #13Originally Posted by taufik-ist
08-02-2006, 10:59 AM #14
Interesting article... i think the people in Indonesia worship him too much.
08-02-2006, 11:08 AM #15Originally Posted by ants
08-02-2006, 08:41 PM #16Originally Posted by badmad
08-02-2006, 10:15 PM #17Originally Posted by taufik-ist
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