Malaysia will have to wait a day longer to get its elusive first Olympic gold.
At the Riocentre Pavilion 4 Wednesday, Goh Liu Ying-Chan Peng Soon were no match for Indonesians Tontowi Ahmad-Lilyana Natsir as they went down 14-21, 12-21 in the mixed doubles final.
It was one match too far for the Malaysians and it was a herculean task from the beginning.
Peng Soon-Liu Ying, the world No. 11, have beaten the world No. 3 Indonesians just once in nine meetings.
Earlier in their Group C match, Liu Ying-Peng Soon were beaten 15-21, 11-21 by Tontowi-Lilyana.
Even the red-and-white Indonesian fans won the battle against the cheering Malaysian supporters.
In the first game, Liu Ying-Peng Soon were always on the back foot.
They committed too many mistakes, especially Liu Ying, against the aggressive Indonesians.
The Malaysians were trailing 2-8, 11-18 and then 13-19 before losing 14-21 in 20 minutes.
It was the same story in the second game. Liu Ying-Peng Soon left themselves with too high a mountain to climb by giving points away easily.
And, with Tontowi at his smashing best, the Indonesians surged to 9-5, 17-11 leads before wrapping up a 21-12 victory in 23 minutes to give their country the best Independence Day gift. Indonesia celebrated their Independence Day on Aug 17.
Malaysia will get another shot at the gold on Friday (10.50pm Malaysian time) when the men’s doubles team of Goh V Shem-Tan Wee Kiong take on China’s Fu Haifeng-Zhang Nan in the final.
Malaysian chef de mission Tan Sri Mohd Al Amin Abdul Majid conceded that the Indonesians were just too good on the day.
“We are not going to give any excuses. The Indonesians are an experienced pair,” he said.
Said Liu Ying: "They were in good condition. We couldn't play our own game. They deserve the gold."
Asked whether Peng Soon would be buying a house now with his share of the RM300,000 under the incentive scheme, Peng Soon said: "No lah. Haven't thought of it. Houses are so expensive these days."
-The Star Online-