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Jonatan upbeat about defeating Lin Dan

by June 2, 2016 General

Saving a point: Men’s doubles Lee Yong-dae ( left ) of South Korea returns a shot as his partner, Yoo Yeon-seong, looks on during their round one match against Angga Pratama and Ricky Karanda Suwardi of Indonesia on Wednesday. The South Koreans won 21-14, 21-9.( JP/Dhoni Setiawan )

Indonesia’s young gun Jonatan Christie is set to face legend Lin Dan of China in the second round of the BCA Indonesia Open Super Series Premier 2016 on Thursday.

Jonatan, who advanced after trashing China’s Hsu Jen Hao 21-12, 21-19 in the 42-minute match that was Wednesday’s opener, is quite confident he can knock out the world number three.

World number 19 Jonatan said that he knew from the beginning that he would meet Dan at one point in the Indonesia Open.

“I’ve watched the Indonesia Open draws since the Thomas Cup tournament [in mid-May], and I knew even back then that I would have the chance to fight Lin Dan here,” said the 18-year-old at Istora Gelora Bung Karno indoor stadium in Senayan, Jakarta, after the opening match.

“My personal target is to at least go into the quarterfinals. I really want to beat Lin Dan,” added the rising shuttler.

Jonatan said that he would be strongly backed up by the home crowd for the second-round match.

“As for shuttlecock matters, I don’t think Lin Dan opts for a speedy shuttlecock. He is a mature player. He plays real tough, but I think he won’t be attacking in the beginning of the match,” he added.

The match between Jonatan and Hsu was marred by a leaky roof from heavy downpours, making the Chinese player lose his focus. Although the technical problems benefited him, Jonatan suggested the organizers fix the problem to avoid distractions in future matches.

Another Indonesian in the second round is veteran Sony Dwi Kuncoro, who progressed easily to the second round as his opponent, world number one Chen Long of China, failed to show up to the match.

Olympian Sony won 2016’s Singapore Open in April, his first win at a Super Series tournament after reportedly suffering an injury.

In the second round at Istora, Sony is set to play against Hong Kong’s Hu Yun, who beat Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk of Thailand on Wednesday.

It was not a lucky day for world number eight Tommy Sugiarto nor Firman Abdul Kholik and Anthony Sinisuka Ginting as they were defeated by their respective opponents.

Tommy was defeated 21-16, 21-14 by Wei Nan of China, Firman was beaten 21-14, 26-24 by Zi Liang Derek Wong of Singapore, and despite putting up a laudable performance Anthony lost 22-20, 25-23 to world number five, Jan O. Jorgensen of Denmark.

Anthony, who managed to take the lead in the early part of each game, was eventually overcome by Jorgensen.

“[Jorgensen] can read his opponent’s gesture perfectly. That is why he knew whenever I was nervous,” Anthony said.

In the doubles’ side, Indonesians Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo advanced to the second round, where they will meet world number one Lee Yong-dae and Yoo Yeon-seong of South Korea.

Qualifiers Akbar Bintang Cahyono and Angger Sudrajat will meet fifth seeded Chai Biao and Hong Wei of China in the second round. Meanwhile, favorite pair, world number two Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan, will face Mads Conrad-Petersen and Mads Pieler Kolding of Denmark.