Indonesian fans demand success from their youthful teams at the BATC

KUALA LUMPUR: Just like Malaysian badminton fans, Indonesians hold high expectations for their teams.

Despite fielding a youthful squad for this year's Badminton Asia Team Championships (BATC), Indonesian fans still expect to see both their men's and women's teams reaching at least the semi-finals.

Two years ago in Selangor, the Indonesian men's team reached the final but succumbed 3-0 to Malaysia, while the women's team were crowned champions after defeating South Korea 3-1 in the final.

This year, Indonesia will once again be without men's singles world No. 5 Anthony Sinisuka Ginting and No. 9 Jonatan Christie.

The women's squad will miss world No. 7 Gregoria Mariska Tunjung, who inspired them to the title in the previous edition.

Nonetheless, die-hard fans still want to see the Indonesian squads perform well.

"It is hard to predict since we have named a youthful squad. However, I would still like to see both our teams reaching the semi-finals at least," said one fan on X.

"Indonesian badminton must go through this phase; if not now, then when?

"It might be difficult, but it's better to face it now than not give our youngsters the opportunity," added another Indonesian fan on X.

The BATC, an Asian qualifier for the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals, starts on Tuesday.

Only the top two teams from each group will advance to the quarter-finals, with the semi-finalists earning spots in the Thomas and Uber Cup Finals in April.

The Indonesian men's team will have their work cut out for them as they are in Group D, with South Korea, who have named their strongest team, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The women's team are in Group X with Hong Kong and Kazakhstan.

The men's team will play Saudi Arabia in their opening fixture, while the women's face Kazakhstan first.

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