Rudy Hartono

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Name: Rudy Hartono
Born: 18 August 1949

Place of birth: Surabaya, Indonesia

Specialty:
Mens Singles
Started playing: Age 9
Biggest title: 8 times All England Champion
Highest ranking: –
Other selected results:

All England1968 – Winner – Defeated Tan Aik Huang (Malaysia)
1969 – Winner – Defeated Darmadi (Indonesia)
1970 – Winner – defeated Svend Pri (Denmark)
1971 – Winner – defeated Muljadi (Indonesia)
1972 – Winner – defeated Svend Pri (Denmark)
1973 – Winner – defeated Christian (Indonesia)
1974 – Winner – defeated Punch Gunalan (Malaysia)
1975 – No. 2 – lost to Svend Pri (Denmark)
1976 – Winner – Defeated Liem Swie King (Indonesia)
1978 – No. 2 – lost to Liem Swie King (Indonesia)

World Championship
1980 – Winner

A year later, at his first try at the All England Championships, the 18-year-old Indonesian became the youngest ever champion of the tournament, beating Tan Aik Huang from Malaysia who had been the winner two years earlier. From then on, Hartono dominated the event like very few had before, winning eight titles in all, from 1968 to 1976. His eight titles at the All England earned Hartono a mention in the Guinness Book of Records.

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The youngest ever champion

Rudy has shown little of his talent during playing badminton at the age of 9 years old, but her fatherrecently noticed when Rudi was 11 years old. Before that Rudy is just practicing on the highway asphalt in front of the offices of the PLN in Surabaya.

Hartono joined the National Training Center in 1965 in order to help his national team in the upcoming Thomas Cup. As a member of the 1966-1967 Thomas Cup squad, he won all of his matches, but Indonesia was beaten by Malaysia in a highly controversial final in which play was suspended due to the unruly crowd.

A year later, at his first try at the All England Championships, the 18-year-old Indonesian became the youngest ever champion of the tournament, beating Tan Aik Huang from Malaysia who had been the winner two years earlier. From then on, Hartono dominated the event like very few had before, winning eight titles in all, from 1968 to 1976. His eight titles at the All England earned Hartono a mention in the Guinness Book of Records.

 

 

“It was not easy to become an All England champion eight times in a row. It is not as much a physical challenge as it is mentally – you become eager to win the next title!”

Rudy Hartono


Hartono defeated Svend Pri in the finals of the 1972 Munich Games in which badminton was presented as a demonstration sport. Hartono was active in Thomas Cup competition and played for his country at the event from 1967 to 1982. 1970,
1973, The 1976, and 1979 Thomas Cup were resounding successes for Hartono and his team, with Indonesia sweeping four straight titles. His game was characterized by great power, accuracy, agility, mobility, aggressiveness, and coolness under pressure. In 1997 he was among the first group of players inducted into the World Badminton Hall of Fame.

The late Pat Davies said of him: “Although an accomplished doubles player, singles was his forte, his smash, even from the baseline as penetrative and accurate as a bazooka fire, his backhand virtually made redundant by his speed about the court and leaping round-the-head interceptions, always on balance and glided into instant recovery, his touch at the net was as smooth as silk. Rudy moved like a Greek God. Court manners impeccable, sporting, modest.”

 

40 year anniversary

 Indonesia’s grand star in the 1970s, in 2016, could celebrate its 40th anniversary of the record he set when he won his eighth All England title in 1976.
Before 1976, the record holder was Danish Erland Kops with seven men’s titles. From 1968 onwards, Rudy Hartono won seven titles in a row, and he was actually about to take eight in a row – but in the final of 1975 he was defeated by Svend Pri. On the other hand, Hartono stroked the top again the following year in the final against compatriot Liem Swie King, and he thus took the record with eight men’s titles in total in 1976. 

 

Personal life

Hartono was born in Surabaya under the name Nio Hap Liang, is the third child of a family of eight, which also includes his sister Jeanne Utama Dewi, a five-time national champion and former Indonesia Uber Cup team member. The young Hartono embraced many types of sports – athletics, volleyball, football, and even roller skating – but his athletic path soon led him towards badminton. Rudy married Jane Anwar in 1976 and they have two children.

 

Post Badminton career

Rudy became involved with the Indonesian Badminton Association (PBSI), holding different positions such as Chairman of Development Affairs until 2006. He is currently a member of PBSI’s Board of Honour. Hartono also played an active role within the Badminton World Federation (BWF). He was a member of the Council in 1985-1986, and later from 1994 to 2009. Hartono’s image and reputation led the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to appoint him as a Goodwill Ambassador for Indonesia.

 

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