Jakarta: Olympic champions No. 6 seeds Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir held their nerves to secure a narrow victory against No. 1 seeds Zheng Siwei/Chen Qingchen of China at the Indonesia Open final in Jakarta on Sunday, winning 22-20, 21-15 in 45 minutes.
The two pairs went neck-and-neck in the first set as both couldn’t open up their lead against the other pair by more than 2 points. At 20-20, Zheng/Chen committed 2 unforced errors that allowed the Indonesian pair to wrap up the first game.
Ahmad/Natsir took advantage of Zheng/Chen’s mistakes in the second set, sent the home crowd into raptures when Zheng Siwei failed to return Ahmad’s strong smash, allowing the Indonesian duo to clinch the Indonesia Open mixed doubles title for the first time.
“This victory is very meaningful for us, we’ve won in the Olympics, we won All England three times before, but we’ve never really been a champion at home until today,” said Ahmad.
In the women’s single, unseeded Japanese player Sayaka Sato won her first ever singles title in a Badminton World Federation Super Series event after defeating World’s No 5, Sung Ji-Hyun of South Korea by 21-13, 17-21, 21-19.
Despite her disappointment in mixed doubles, Chen Qingchen and Jia Yifan outlasted third-seeded South Korean pair Chang Ye-na and Lee So-Hee 21-19, 15-21, 21-10 to win the women’s doubles crown earlier Sunday.