Thursday, November 10, 2011

Shuttler Tommy ready to follow in dad Icuk’s footsteps

JAKARTA: Photos of Indonesian sports legends are on display at shopping malls here in conjunction with the Games and one figure stood out from the rest – Icuk Sugiarto.

The former world badminton champion is idolised and adored by many in Indonesia. But he has one special fan and it is none other than his 23–year–old son Tommy, who is determined to follow in his father’s footsteps.
Tommy is happy that he now has the privilege of being coached by Icuk after leaving the national team set-up earlier this year.

Much had been expected from Tommy since he joined the Indonesian back–up squad five years ago, but he does not have a single major title to his name, unlike his father, who starred in almost every big tournament in the 1980s.

“I grew up wanting to be just like him. I trained with him at a young age but I had to say goodbye when I got a place in the national team,” said Tommy yesterday.

“But I did not achieve much and went back to him this year. I believe he can help revive my career.”
In just a few months after re-uniting with his father, Tommy emerged the Taiwan Open champion and reached the Indonesia Open final.

He has also beaten his seniors Taufik Hidayat and Sony Dwi Kuncoro for the first time this year.
“My father is the director of a badminton club but he still allocates time for me. He is a runner and places great emphasis on fitness and I am physically fitter now.”

“People here recognise me as the famous Icuk’s son. But I want to make a name for myself. I want to win the world and Super Series titles and become a legend just like him,” added Tommy.
Tommy will have a chance to carry his father’s legacy at the SEA Games when the team badminton competition begins here on Saturday.

The others in his team are Simon Santoso, Taufik and Dionysius Hayom Rumbaka.
“Badminton is the pride and joy of our nation and I will do my part in the team event. Hopefully, a good showing here will reward me with a place in the Thomas Cup Finals next year.

“I am not taking part in the individual competition as Taufik and Simon stand a better chance of winning the gold medal,” he said.

“But my time will come. I want to start beating more big names like Lee Chong Wei (of Malaysia) and Lin Dan of China on the international stage,” added the world No 16, who was the world junior silver medallist in 2006.


No comments:

Post a Comment