The mixed doubles expert of Indonesia, Liliyana Natsir has stated that all the top eight pairs of the world stand an equal chance to win the crown in the London Olympics, set to be staged from July 27, 2012.
The World Number three mixed doubles pair Tontowi Ahmad-Liliyana Natsir has been tagged as the biggest Indonesian hope in the mega event as their compatriot shuttlers like former World and Olympic Champion Taufik Hidayat, Simon Santoso and defending Men’s doubles Champion duo Markis Kido-Hendra Setiawan has very few chances to seal the glory.
The duo Tontowi-Liliyana raised nation’s hopes by winning back-to-back European events, the All England Open and Swiss Open, but it seems that female member of the team, Liliyana is trying to keep herself grounded.
She thinks they still need to do lot of work as all the participants out there will be carrying an equal chance.
Liliyana said, “We have to study the performances of players with higher rankings. But among the top-eight players, I think their strengths are equal.”
The top two pairs of the world Zhang Nan-Zhao Yunlei and Xu Chen-Ma Jin from China will be the biggest hurdles in their way to glory and Liliyana is aware of the fact that their Chinese rivals will be marking their strong and weak points in the game.
She said, “They will definitely study our playing pattern and flaws. Therefore, the main thing we can do with coaches and officials is to learn more playing patterns and techniques.”
The duo of Tontowi and Liliyana is determined to surpass all the world class pairs as they did in recent European tourneys. They buried the World Number six Danish pair Thomas Laybourn-Kamilla Rytter Juhl in All England Open and then in Swiss Open they overpowered World Number nine pair Sudket Prapakamol-Saralee Thoungthongkam.
Liliyana Natsir was in a ceremony, organised by their club sponsors, where she and her partner Tontowi Ahmad were awarded RP 200 million each for their exceptional performance in recent European tourneys.
The mixed doubles duo earned admiration from the badminton legends like Sigit Budiarto, Candra Wijaya, Liem Swie King and Christian Hadinata who were also present in the event.