Indonesians Seek Olympic Berths Via Wild Cards

By webadmin on 11:17 pm Jun 28, 2012
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Ami Afriatni & Sandy Pramuji

Dedeh Erawati, Maria Natalia Londa and Triyaningsih are expected to find out by early next week if they will represent Indonesia in next month’s Olympics.

The Indonesia Olympic Committee (KOI) announced on Tuesday that the country received two wild-card berths in athletics.

KOI official Ade Lukman said that the men’s wild card would go to Fernando Lumain, a 200-meter sprinter, but he mistakenly announced that Maria had received the other berth.

The Indonesia Athletics Association (PASI) said on Thursday that it had yet to decide who would get the last wild card.

“There are three candidates for the last wild card — Maria, Dedeh and Triyaningsih,” PASI secretary general Tigor Tanjung said on Thursday. “We’ll make our decision after the last Olympic qualifying tournaments in Asia this weekend.”

Dedeh, whose event is the 100-meter hurdles, will make her Olympic bid at the Asian All-Star Athletics Championship in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on Saturday, while long-jumper Maria is at the Hong Kong Inter-City Athletics Championships.

Long-distance runner Triyaningsih is not competing this weekend.

“We already have Triyaningsih’s record and we’ll compare that with other two athletes’ results,” PASI head of athlete development Paulus Lay said.

Dedeh recently broke her national record by 0.02 seconds when she won in the Taiwan Open in May. Her time of 13.18 seconds, however, was still slower than minimum Olympic qualifying time of 13.15 seconds for the women’s 100 hurdles.

Maria’s best jump is 6.55 meters, which she also recorded in Taiwan, but she is shy of the Olympic mark by 0.1 meters.

“That’s so close. I was unlucky [in Taiwan], but I’ll make it up in Hong Kong,” the 22-year-old said. “Competing in the Olympic has always been my dream, and I know I can be there. I just have to try harder.”

Paulus said he hoped both of them could meet the Olympic standards so the wild card would go to another athlete.

Aside from the two wild cards, 19 Indonesian athletes have qualified on merit for the Games.

Badminton will send nine shuttlers — men’s singles players Simon Santoso and Taufik Hidayat; the men’s doubles team of Bona Septano and Mohammad Ahsan; women’s singles player Adriyanti Firdasari; women’s doubles players Greysia Polii and Meiliana Jauhari; and the mixed doubles tandem of Tontowi Ahmad and Liliyana Natsir.

Weightlifting secured six spots — five males and one female. Their names will be announced next week.

Three female athletes — archer Ika Yuliana Rochmawati, fencer Diah Permatasari and shooter Diaz Kusumawardhani — are also going to the Olympics.

On Tuesday, swimmer I Gede Siman Sudartawa, who won four gold medals at the 2011 Southeast Asian Games, also received a wild card by FINA, the international swimming governing body.