Indonesia will start its quest for the Uber Cup women’s championship title this year with an opening group stage match against Malaysia in Bangkok on Monday afternoon.
It is going to be an important match for both countries as they seek a solid foundation to reach the knockout round. In Group D, Indonesia finds itself up against Malaysia, France and record 14-title holder and defending champion China.
Susy Susanti, head of sport development for the Indonesian Badminton Association (PBSI), said her team was ready to fight for a spot in the next round.
“The strategy for the [opening] match is based on head-to-head between players [of Indonesia and Malaysia],” Susy said on Sunday, adding that the association had decided who would play whom based on their respective condition.
The cup applies a best-of-match match -- three singles and two doubles -- with a tradition of sending off a country’s top player to open the match.
Indonesian Fitriani, world number 39, has a chance to play world number 31 Goh Jin Wei in Monday’s opener.
Susy said the world ranking would not affect the match, as she believed the individual player’s readiness was more significant when it comes to playing on the court.
“They are on the same level. They have beaten each other in previous matches. Now, it depends on their readiness, bravery and confidence when they step onto the court.
“We are optimistic, although we know it will be a tough match,” added the Indonesian legend, who helped the country win the cup in 1994 and 1996.
Indonesia, a three-time title holder, has been struggling to return to the top level after the 1996 victory. In the previous cup in 2016, Indonesia lost in the quarterfinals.