Pia makes it to main round of RI Open


The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

Pia Zebadiah Bernadet, who stole the show during the recent Uber Cup competition, entered the main round of the US$250,000 Djarum Indonesia Super Series badminton championship at the Bung Karno Sports Stadium in Jakarta on Tuesday.

Pia recovered from a game down to dispose of Huan Hsiao Chen of Taipei, 19-21, 21-13 and 21-19.

However, her chance for a further run of success is in the balance with her being up against Indonesia's No. 1, Maria Kristin, in the opening round on Wednesday, in a match where she said would have preferred to play somebody else from somewhere else.

"I actually would prefer to play against another foreign shuttler to my own friend. But I will do as well as I can," she said. Pia secured Indonesia's victory over Germany in the Uber Cup semifinals before the team lost to defending champion China in the final.

The event, the sixth series in the World Badminton Federation (WBF), is deprived of several of the world's top players.

World No. 1 Lin Dan of China is resting after leading his country to another Thomas Cup victory in Jakarta in May.

World No. 2 Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia, who triumphed in Singapore, is skipping the competition. Other champions are fighting to win back-to-back titles after Singapore — Tine Rasmussen of Denmark (women's singles), Nova Widiyanto/Lilyana Natsir of Indonesia (mixed doubles) and Mohd. Zakry Abdul Latif/Mohd.Fairuzizuan Mohd. Tazari of Malaysia (men's doubles).

They will start their battle on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Pia struggled in the opening game before gaining composure in the remaining two games to beat Chen.

"I am still suffering from a thigh injury and influenza so that I did not do so well today," Pia said, expecting another tough match against Maria.

Other Indonesians entering the main round include Maria Febe Kusumastuti and Rosaria Yusfin Pungkasari in the women's singles.

In the men's singles, Alamsyah Yunus, Indra Bagus Ade Chandra, A. Hartanto booked their next matches after defeating their respective opponents.

Men's doubles Chrisna Adi Wijaya/Radhitan Syarif Syahmie secured a place in the main round with a 21-13, 20-22, 21-16 win over Taipei's Jen Cheng Chung/Hsiang Chun Hsiao.

In the women's singles, Maria Febe saw off Fu Mingtian of Singapore 21-18, 15-21, 21-17 to earn a match against Pi Hongyan of France in the next round.

Rosaria brushed aside compatriot Tieke Ariedaningrum 21-11, 21-12. She will meet Saina Nehwal of India in the next round.

Alamsyah Yunus eased past P. Sapkulchananart of Thailand,21-13, 21-8.

He said he had not expected the straight-game victory.

"I thought I would have had a difficult match against him, but Sapkulchananart performed badly, especially during the second game," he said.

He said he was optimistic to defeat Indian Arvind Bhat, his opponent on Wednesday, to meet his expectation for a run to the quarterfinals.

"I hope I can perform better than the past two years when I lost in the first round on both occasions," he said.

Hartanto defeated Anand Pawar of India 21-17, 21-18. He will challenge Indonesia's top player Sony Dwi Kuncoro. Indra Bagus beat Rune Ulsing of Denmark 21-19, 21-12. (ewd)


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