Indonesian top shuttlers quit national team

16:21, December 23, 2009      

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World No. 3 doubles players MarkisKido and Hendra Setiawan have decided to quit the national badminton team, a local media reported here on Wednesday.

Markis's health problems -- he's been suffering from high blood pressure since August -- were the main reason behind their decision after their victory at the recently-held Southeast Asian Games in Laos.

"The (national team's) physical training program is getting harder. My blood pressure problem deters me from practicing with as high an intensity as the others and it makes me feel bad. I can't stand to watch others train hard while I only sit. So I think it would be better if I pull out from the national team." Markis, 25, was quoted by the Jakarta Globe on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Markis' faithful partner in men's doubles, Hendra Setiawan, would not play with other shuttler. He only wants to keep playing alongside Markis.

"We've been partners since we were kids. I don't think either of us could perform as well as we do now if we were no longer partners," Hendra said. "I can't think of playing with someone else."

Markis revealed that they had sent a resignation letter to the Indonesia Badminton Association (PBSI) before they went to Laos.

He said that he and Hendra had discussed his decision to leave national team with his coach, Sigit Pamungkas, and their families." They all supported us," Markis said.

After their resignation from the national team, Markis and Hendra will return to their club, Jaya Raya, and pursue careers as professional shuttlers.

Because of Markis's blood pressure problems, as well as a nagging knee injury, the pair was out of action for most of the season.

They withdrew from the World Championships in India in August, losing the opportunity to defend their title.

Their decision to leave the national team still come as a shock because Markis and Hendra were a bright spot in an otherwise not-so-good year for Indonesian shuttlers, when compared to the national team's usual high standards.

Source: Xinhua
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