(Blibli Indonesia Open 2018) Tontowi/Liliyana are One Step Closer to Replicate Last Year’s Success

Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir
Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir
Indonesia Open ‐ Created by AH | IMN

A ticket to the final match of Blibli Indonesia Open 2018 has been secured by the Indonesian mixed doubles pair, Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir. The champion of Indonesia Open 2017 made it to the final round after beating their junior, Hafiz Faizal/Gloria Emanuelle Widjaja through a two-set match within the course of 30 minutes in a semifinal match which was held earlier today, Saturday (7/7) in Istora Senayan, Jakarta.

During today’s match, Tontowi/Liliyana claimed to have passed through a fierce battle on the first game, while they easily gained many points from Hafizh/Gloria on the second round.

“On the first game, Hafiz/Gloria gave us a fierce battle, and if we lose a little bit of our focus on the game we’ll lose many points to them. On the second game, they made too many unforced errors and that benefits us a lot,” said Liliyana.

“As we said yesterday, playing against our teammate helps us a lot as we know each other’s strengths and weaknesses. Before the match, we had our discussions on how to put strategy before playing against Hafiz/Gloria, and that strategy worked well,” Tontowi added.

On the final round, Tontowi/Lilyana will see Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying, the Malaysian pair who defeated Zheng Siwei/Huang Yaqiong from China with the score of 21-18, 21-16.

Tomorrow’s match will be a Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic final replay for both pairs. On that occasion, Tontowi/Liliyana managed to play brilliantly and took home to gold medal after winning the game 2114, 21-12 against Chan/Goh. The current head-to-head statistics between the two pairs is 9-1 for the Indonesian pair lead, this motivates Tontowi/Liliyana ahead of the final match that will be held tomorrow.

“Playing against the Malaysian makes us happy. Although Goh had a long-term injury after the recent Olympics and he has just returned to the competition, we cannot underestimate them. It is certain that we will focus more since the beginning of the match,” Liliyana added.

Meanwhile, Chan/Goh claimed to have prepared a lot ahead of the match against Tontowi/Liliyana, who will definitely have the full support from the crowd in Istora.

“We have prepared a lot for tomorrow, to play against the whole stadium. Everyone will certainly support Tontowi/Liliyana. And we will definitely prepare a special strategy for that,” as claimed by Goh after the match.

“So far, Tontowi/Liliyana managed to win more games. They are very strong and we have to show our best effort for tomorrow’s match,” Chan added.

The final match of Blibli Indonesia Open 2018 that will be held tomorrow will be the fourth final for Tontowi/Liliyana throughout their career as a partner. Previously, they have reached the final round in 2011, 2012 and 2017. Tontowi/Liliyana only wins the title once in 2017 despite reaching the final for three times.