SEA Games 07 Jan 2022
Indonesia will field the best line-up in women's singles for the 31st SEA Games at Hanoi, Vietnam, slated for May, as Head of Performance Development of the Badminton Association of Indonesia (PBSI), Rionny Mainaky, said.
Rionny also said that PBSI saw the regional multisports event as important, although the National Sports Grand Design does not state the SEA Games as the primary focus.
"We are ready to participate in all numbers, and we presented our current line-up. For example, we will field the best line-up in women's singles. For men's competition, we're still in discussion," he said after discussing with the Sports Development Commission, late December.
"Malaysia and Thailand will be our main rivals. Though the Olympics is still our main aim, we will not take the SEA Games lightly. We won't send a weak team to the Games."
Gregoria Mariska Tunjung is currently the best Indonesian women's singles, ranked 26th, followed by Fitriani in 42nd, and Ruselli Hartawan in 45th. The rising star Putri Kusuma Wardani is in 72nd place.
PBSI also faces a schedule conflict as the 2022 Thomas Cup is scheduled on May 17-22, conflicting with the 31st SEA Games, slated for May 12-23.
Rionny said the talent pool in men's singles and doubles were deep, and there's only a small skills gap between them.
"We're preparing the young athletes for the Olympics. The young boys are catching up with their seniors, and experience will differentiate. So, I don't have any concerns," he said.
"It's only entry by number phase. We still have time. Are we going to send a young team to the Thomas Cup after ending a 19-year drought or else? I have assured the (Sports Development) Commission that we have many good athletes in men's singles and doubles."