Thread: Tommy Sugiarto
06-25-2013, 08:43 AM #69
Can Tommy Sugiarto lead the Indonesian charge?
When Tommy Sugiarto knelt down to kiss the turf at the Singapore Open after his title victory, it signalled an emotional moment in an unusual journey.
For most of his career, Sugiarto languished in the nether regions of world badminton. He would have passed off as just another middle-rung player if he wasn’t the son of former World Champion Icuk Sugiarto – and consequently, the expectations must have been high. Icuk was one of the greats of his era, and his 1983 World Championships victory over Liem Swie King is regarded as one of the greatest matches in the game’s history. Consequently, when his son started to play internationally, there was more scrutiny than usual.
Growing up, there was plenty of badminton talk at home. Tommy says his father wasn’t particularly a reflective type; the talk came from his father’s friends. “With my father, it was mostly about discussing my game,” Tommy said in a conversation with this writer. ”His friends would recollect his matches. I would play a few sessions with him too. Sometimes he gives me stroke practice. After each tournament I have a discussion with him, whether I win or lose… he pitches in while I’m training at the club.”
Unlike his father, the younger Sugiarto did not seem to possess any special gifts. While his father was a relentless retriever who achieved international success early in his career, Tommy seemed to be destined for the sport’s smaller prizes. He had an unremarkable record at the Superseries, falling mostly in the first or second rounds. He turned professional in 2010, just as many of his compatriots had done, as they weren’t getting on well with the national association.
It was at the Hong Kong Superseries late last year that the turnaround began. With wins over Wong Wing Ki, Parupalli Kashyap and Marc Zwiebler, Tommy reached his first Superseries semifinal, losing to eventual winner Chen Long. A few more impressive performances followed: runner-up at the Syed Modi GP Gold, final at the German Open, quarter-finals at the All England, and another Superseries semifinal, at the Indonesia Open.
The Indonesia Open will remain a memorable tournament, for he finally achieved the long sought-after breakthrough against a top-3 player, beating Chen Long in the first round after six successive defeats to the feared Chinese. The semifinal placing at the Indonesia Open was followed by another stirring run at Singapore, where he finally triumphed after five hard-fought matches.
“I’m obviously happy to have won my first Superseries,” Sugiarto was quoted as saying in his association’s website. “My last victory over Boonsak made me confident I could beat him. In the last game I made Boonsak run around the court, and I felt superior in terms of stamina. I realized that I won the second game, I had a great chance to win the match. But I also anticipated that Boonsak would fight harder in the third game. I was ready for a gruelling match.”
Tommy Sugiarto’s success hasn’t come a moment too soon for his nation. In the aftermath of the retirement of Taufik Hidayat, and with Sony Dwi Kuncoro and Simon Santoso falling behind, his national desperately seeks a strong men’s singles player.
Whether Sugiarto can fulfil that role remains to be seen. For the moment, he offers hope that Indonesian men’s singles is not out of the picture yet.
06-25-2013, 08:41 PM #70
after simon santoso, tommy sugiarto is the only MS talent in INA. even, when when Tommy was WJC runner up in 2006, Hayom was nowhere. Tommy was far above Hayom at that time.
I believe, anyone who work hard despite not having a special talent will get the result.
Tommy is one of the few example....
naistav liked this post
06-28-2013, 02:47 AM #71
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