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14 Jun, 2021
Former Olympic and World Champion, Markis Kido succumbed to a heart attack, on court and doing what he does the best – setting a badminton court on fire. At just 36, surely, he was too young to have left us all – sad, heartbroken, and definitely shell-shocked. As news percolated the social-media sphere, there was a collective gasp at the passing of this fantastic champion and an even better human being.
As was his routine, every Monday, Kido was at a sports complex in Tangerang and started with his usual routine, before collapsing on court, never to come back up again. Former Olympian Candra Wijaya was the first to notice Kido going down and rushed to his rescue.
Both the Badminton World Federation and the Badminton Association of Indonesia (PBSI) confirmed the sad turn of events in separate statements and lauded the doubles specialist for his immense achievements on the court and his contributions to the sport as one of its finest ambassadors.
Leading the tributes for his compatriot and former partner was Hendra Setiawan, who called him one of the most extraordinary and talented players, to have have played with.
“My deepest condolences for one of my best partners in joy and sorrow… he was one of the most extraordinary and talented players… I want to say thank you for being a good partner in winning or losing… thank you to have partnered me from scratch and we both worked hard for 14 years. Thank you, Kido and goodbye,” Setiawan said.
Kido had been one of the most prolific and prominent figures in world badminton for a decade – from the mid 2000s to the mid 2010s – winning just about everything there was to be won and scaling the very top of the badminton world rankings. A hard-hitting and muscular man, he forged a near perfect partnership with Setiawan winning the Badminton Asia Championships title in 2005.
And there was no stopping the winning thereafter – 2007 World Championships, 2008 Olympic Gold, 2010 Asian Games 2010, and 10 Super Series Titles. Not to mention the legion of fans & hearts he won over during the course of his career with his all-action approach making him an instant sensation, especially so in India where he played in the Premier Badminton League.
CEO of the Hyderabad Hunters badminton franchise, Shyam Gopu, for whom Kido played in the title winning 2018 season said that it was shocking beyond words to hear of the passing away of the Indonesian star.
“We are still getting to terms with this news. Kido was a fantastic professional and we’ll always cherish the times he spent with us. As lively and spectacular on court, he was gentle and quiet off it, always willing to help the youngsters, he set a fantastic example for some of the younger players in our franchise.
“On behalf of all the players, staff and fans of Hyderabad Hunters, I extend my heartfelt condolences to his family and countrymen in this difficult time,” Mr Shyam added.
Viktor Axelsen, PV Sindhu, Sikki Reddy, Jwala Gutta, Satwik Sairaj and several other stars took to social media to express their grief and condolences.
Kido leaves behind a stellar legacy and accomplishments galore. Loved and revered in equal measure, he leaves his legion of badminton fans and scores of his colleagues – shell-shocked. There wasn’t a voice I spoke to last evening, that didn’t quiver a little bit as they came to grips with it. The social media tributes from the who’s who of world badminton are a testament to how much Kido was loved – not just in his country but the world over.
Indeed, at 36, Kido was just getting into his post-retirement career and there was so much yet to have been accomplished. And despite the pall of gloom and sadness, there’s no denying that Kido will forever remain amongst the very best in the pantheon of badminton greats. And the great champion, for now, can rest in peace on his many laurels.
You’ll be missed Kido, but definitely never forgotten. Selamat Jalan, dear legend!!