Tony Gunawan

USA Badminton

Gunawan
  • 2000
  • 2004
  • 2008
  • 2012

Event: Men’s Doubles

Doubles Partner: Howard Bach

Height: 5’ 9”

Weight: 175 lbs.

Birthplace: Indonesia

Hometown: Los Angeles, Calif.

Current Residence: Los Angeles, Calif.

Coach: Rudy Gunawan and Zi Min Cai

 

Olympic Games: 2000 Olympic Games, Sydney, Australia

  Men’s Doubles (Candra Wijaya), Gold Medal

Representing Indonesia

                                   

World Championships: 2005 World Championships, Anaheim, Calif., USA

Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Gold Medal

                                    Representing USA

                                    2001 World Championships, Seville, Spain

                                    Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold Medal – Representing Indonesia

 

Personal:

Tony Gunawan became a citizen of the United States of America on September 6, 2011…Started playing badminton at a very young age and quickly rose to the internationally elite level culminating with winning the Olympic gold medal in men’s doubles, with partner Candra Wijaya, at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia for his native Indonesia at the age of 25…Won the gold medal in men’s doubles at the 2001 World Badminton Championships in Seville, Spain for Indonesia with Halim Haryanto Ho…With an opportunity to pursue a coaching career in the United States of America following the 2000 Olympic Games, Gunawan decided to make the move to the Orange County Badminton Club in Orange, Calif., knowing that it could be the end of his competitive badminton career…Gunawan found success in coaching and helped develop USA Badminton athletes and take them to a higher level of play…In preparation for the 2004 Olympic Games, Gunawan worked closely with USA Badminton’s men’s doubles team of Kevin Han and Howard Bach…As a young coach and recently retired elite athlete, Gunawan had the unique ability to not only help coach the team, but also to serve as a formidable training partner further developing the game of the top USA Badminton athletes…Gunawan’s doubles expertise helped 1996 and 2000 Olympic veteran Han improve his doubles game and helped mature Bach to an Olympic level athlete…Following the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece, Han, a now three-time U.S. Olympian, retired from competition…This left Bach, a natural doubles player in his prime, as the top USA Badminton athlete, but without a men’s doubles partner…An idea was hatched for Bach to team up and play men’s doubles with Gunawan for the 2005 Badminton World Federation season as a way to continue to develop Bach’s game and hopefully take it to a higher level…While not eligible to represent a country at the Olympic Games without proof of citizenship, Badminton World Federation rules allowed an athlete to compete for and represent their chosen country prior to becoming fully certified citizens...The initial pairing of Bach and Gunawan certainly did take Bach’s game to a higher level…The pair culminated their initial partnership in 2005 by making history and winning a first ever World Championship gold medal for the United States of America in the sport of badminton on August 22, 2005…Never before had a USA Badminton athlete won a medal at the World Championship or Olympic level in the sport of badminton…Their accomplishment put USA Badminton on the map and also earned the two the coveted United States Olympic Committee Team of the Year Award for 2005…What made the moment even sweeter was the fact that they were able to accomplish this feat in the United States as the 2005 World Badminton Championships were held in Anaheim, Calif. at the Arrowhead Pond, just down the road from the Orange County Badminton Club where Bach and Gunawan both trained…Knowing that he would not be eligible to receive his U.S. citizenship prior to the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China, Gunawan had always looked at the 2005 season as a type of competition swan song for him…The plan all along was to use the 2005 season to develop Bach into a better player that would be able to compete at a higher level internationally for the long term betterment of USA Badminton…Following the 2005 season Bach teamed up with Khan “Bob” Malaythong…Malaythong, originally from Laos, had recently received his U.S. citizenship and the two set off on their journey to the 2008 Olympic Games…The pairing proved good as Bach and Malaythong also made history as the pair became the first USA Badminton athletes ever to reach the quarterfinal round in Olympic badminton competition…Following the 2008 Olympic Games, Malaythong decided to retire from international competition and start his own coaching career…Bach also entertained thoughts of retiring, but the draw of the court was too strong and he wanted more…In 2009 he talked to his old friend and partner Gunawan and convinced him to give competitive badminton a go once again…The two decided to test the international waters in 2009 to see if they still had the ability and desire to try to recapture the magic they found as a team in 2005…The select tournaments the two played in the 2009 season were enough to convince them they would be competitive if they decided to make a full-time comeback so they set their plan in motion playing a top-notch schedule of Super Series events in 2010 and performed well enough to rank in the top 10 in the Badminton World Federation rankings…Fully committed as a team, Bach and Gunawan represent America’s best hope of reaching badminton’s medal podium at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, England…A great deal can happen in two years and Bach and Gunawan aren’t spring chickens anymore…With his U.S. citizenship in hand, Gunawan has cleared his biggest hurdle to the 2012 Olympic Games…Both also focus on keeping their bodies healthy so that they can play at their highest level when they compete...Tony Gunawan is married to Eti Gunawan and the couple has two sons, Christopher (born 2007) and Leon (born August 2010).

 

Competition Record:

 

2011 Results:

2011 United States Pan American Games Badminton Team Member, Guadalajara, Mexico

World Badminton Championships in London, England, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Did not advance

U.S. Open Grand Prix Gold Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Silver

Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Bronze

2011 Sudirman Cup, U.S. Team Member

U.S. National Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Gold

Peru International Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Gold

                                 

2010 Results:

Yonex – Sunrise Hong Kong Open Super Series, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Bronze

China Open Super Series, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Did not advance

World Badminton Championships in Paris, France, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Did not advance

Yonex Canadian Open Grand Prix of Badminton, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach) Bronze

U.S. Open Grand Prix Gold Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach) Bronze

Indonesia Open Super Series of Badminton, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Quarterfinals

Singapore Open Super Series of Badminton, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Silver

 

2009 Results:

World Badminton Championships in Hyderabad, India, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Quarterfinals

Yonex Open Japan Super Series of Badminton, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Bronze

 

2008 Results:

Bay Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Silver

 

2006 Results:

U.S. Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold

 

2005 Results:

USOC Team of the Year Overall Winner (with Howard Bach)

World Badminton Championships in Anaheim, Calif., USA, Men’s Doubles (Howard Bach), Gold Medal – Representing USA

Dutch Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Bronze

Chinese Taipei Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold

Bitburger German Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold

 

2001 Results:

Japan Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Bronze

Indonesia Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Silver

Malaysia Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Silver

Singapore Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho awan), Gold

All England Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold

World Badminton Championships in Seville, Spain, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold

 

2000 Results:

2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia, Men’s Doubles (Candra Wijaya), Gold Medal – Representing Indonesia

Copenhagen Master Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Silver

 

1999 Results:

World Final Grand Prix, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Silver

 

1998 Results:

Denmark Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Bronze

Asia Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Bronze

Singapore Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Bronze

Brunei Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold

Malaysia Open Badminton Championships, Men’s Doubles (Halim Haryanto Ho), Gold

 

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