• Till date the thought of not winning the singles title at the badminton Open in his own country Indonesia bothers him no end. This, and an Olympic gold medal, are about the only prizes that eluded Hariyanto Arbi who dominated the world badminton scene in the 1990s with his blazing smashes. In Chandigarh, as a chief guest at the concluding ceremony of the 6th edition of the Sudama Cup badminton tournament for 35 years-plus players, which witnessed participation from 700 odd players from across the country and neighbouring countries like Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Indonesia, the 45-years-old former ace shuttler shared with lifeinchandigarh.com his journey from a top ranking world player to now managing his own badminton equipment, accessories and apparel brand Flypower-Arbi.

The brand launched in 2002 after he bid adieu to his professional career, “is doing good”, he shared without divulging its financials. “Currently Flypower-Arbi, besides Indonesia, is selling in 18 countries across Asia and Europe and competing with brands like Yonex, Li Ning and Pittor. We are in the process of widening its footprint further,” he added.


Hariyanto Arbi, who won the coveted All-England singles title in 1993 and 1994 and the then biennial IBF (BWF) World Championship in 1995, has a simple ‘mantra’ for budding young players, “Once you are convinced you have the talent to do well in the sport, there is no substitute for sweat and blood. You have to work hard on improving your game and fitness with every passing day without any let up. Participation in tournaments at the highest level in respective age categories will instil the much needed confidence and mental strength to win against all odds.”

Arbi played singles for Indonesian teams that won consecutive Thomas Cup (world men’s team) titles in 1994, 1996, and 1998. Arbi's other individual victories included the Chinese Taipei Open (1993, 1994), Japan Open (1993, 1995), Badminton World Cup (1994), Hong Kong Open (1994, 1995), Korea Open (1995), Singapore Open (1997, 1999), South East Asian Games (1997) and the badminton competition at the quadrennial Asian Games (1994).

In the final of the Indian Open in 1997, Hariyanto Arbi crushed India’s Pullela Gopichand, the celebrated current national chief coach of the Indian badminton team, 15-4, 15-7 to lift the title.
Throughout his reign on the world badminton scene from 1993 to 1997, his arch rivals remained his own compatriots Ardy Wiranata, who kept Arbi at bay in the Indonesian Open right through the 1990s with his total dominance, and Joko Suprianto.

Hope to see more of you in India, Hariyanto !!