Meet the Asia Cup 2022 Teams: Indonesia
JAKARTA (Indonesia) - There is a little bit more on the line in FIBA Asia Cup 2022 hosts, Indonesia. Aside from getting the chance to play in front of their loyal fans, they will also be playing for direct qualification spot at FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023.
Expect nothing less than the best effort from the home team in Jakarta during this year’s Asia Cup.
Let’s take a quick moment to meet Indonesia in this "Meet the Teams" series!
World Rank according to FIBA World Ranking Presented by Nike: 95
Weirdly enough, Indonesia are ranked lower now that they were when the Asia Cup Qualifiers started. Prior to Window 1 of the Qualifiers, they were ranked at 88 and even worked their way up to 85 in the Ranking that was updated after the Tokyo Olympics.
Even though they’ve made a decline down to 95, some might consider them as underrated considering their recent performance in the Southeast Asian Games.
Asia Cup Debut: 1960
Indonesia were among one of the seven teams that played in the inaugural Asia Cup, then called the Asian Basketball Confederation (ABC) Championship.
They got a 98-76 win over Malaysia before bowing out of the Preliminary Round. 62 years later, they are hosting the competition for the second time.
Asia Cup Appearances (including 2022): 18
After playing in that first Asia Cup, Indonesia’s appearance in the competition were here and there until 1983. From that year until 1997, Indonesia never missed a single Asia Cup, totaling for 8 appearances - their longest streak ever.
A strong generation of talents led by Mario Wuysang got them back to the Asia Cup in 2005 and sparked four consecutive appearances until…
Most Recent Appearance: 2011
It’s been just over a decade since Indonesia played in the Asia Cup.
As one might imagine, none of the players from that squad are currently in the national team pool today (as far as players who have recently played) - with most transitioned to be coaches at this point.
Indonesia dropped out of the Preliminary Round after three straight losses, but were still able to make some noise with wins over Bahrain and India to claim 13th place.
Best Position in Final Standings: 4th place (1967)
In their second Asia Cup, Indonesia were able to finish all the way up at 4th place for their highest finish ever in the competition.
The tournament was competed in a single round robin format where all 10 teams played each other once before the final standings were be determined.
Indonesia lost their first 4 games, but came back strongly with wins over India (130-107), Malaysia (89-80), Thailand, (97-90), Chinese Taipei (90-87), Singapore (110-75), and Hong Kong (94-54).
They’re 5-4 record was tied with India and Chinese Taipei, but easily claimed the tiebreaker as India had beaten Chinese Taipei.
Notable Player(s): Mario Wuysang
Mario Wuysang was the face of Indonesia basketball from the late 2000s up until nearly the end of the 2010s, a lengthy and productive span of nearly 15 years.
In 3 Asia Cups, the point guard led Indonesia in scoring with 11.3 points per game while also putting up 3.6 assists and 3.4 rebounds per contest since 2007.
He’s had multiple games scoring over 20 points - even reaching 33 points at one points - while also being a great facilitator, leading all players in Asia Cup 2011 with 6.4 assists per contest.
More than his performance on court, Wuysang has always been an iconic figure for Indonesia basketball players. He is someone that most likely all players in this generation look up to and even approach for advice every now and then.
How they got here:
Indonesia got to Asia Cup 2022 by serving as host nation, their second time in the history of the competition.
Nonetheless, Indonesia still played on through the same path as those who qualified to play in Jakarta including the Asia Cup Pre-Qualifiers. Following strong performances through both the SEABA and East Region Pre-Qualifiers, Indonesia beat Thailand twice in the Asia Cup Qualifiers to finish in third place of Group A.
Current Outlook: Start of a historic summer?
Indonesia started the year with a tough February Window in the World Cup 2023 Asian Qualifiers, losing by a large margin to both Jordan and Saudi Arabia. They would later find out at the Asia Cup Draw that they would have to play both of those teams again in the Group Phase, along with defending champions Australia.
While that might seems like a bleak outlook for the hosts, they might actually be turning around the corner.
Indonesia recently played in the Southeast Asian (SEA) Games and were able to claim a historic gold medal - their first ever in the competition. Impressively, the accomplishment was clinched when they upset the Philippines in their final game - the first team to beat Gilas in at least 20 years in the SEA Games, breaking a winning streak of at least 45 games.
Was that win an outlier or a sign of things to come? We’ll have to find out at Asia Cup 2022.