Indonesian men's futsal aims for SEA Games Final

The Indonesia national futsal team has set itself the high target of reaching the finals of the upcoming SEA Games in Thailand, where futsal will be making its maiden appearance in the biannual South East Asian sporting event. "We still have eight months to prepare ourselves. Reaching the finals will be a realistic target," Justin Lhaksana, the national team's coach, was quoted in The Jakarta Post. "Our national team is in top form now with newly-joined young players on board. We've used the recent (ASEAN Football Federation futsal championship) matches in Bangkok as a tryout for our new national team. And they did very well," he said.

Lhaksana added that Indonesia performed well, despite failing to reach the semifinal round of the ASEAN futsal championship. Indonesia beat the Philippines 1-0, drew with Malaysia 2-2 and lost to debutantes Australia 5-3. Indonesia settled third in the group, outrun in total points by Malaysia. "Malaysia had better preparation in the two weeks before the championship, while the Australian team is a world championship regular. I think the Bangkok result was good enough," he said.

Chemby Hutapea, Chairman of the National Futsal Body (BFN) of the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI), said the body had submitted its list of 20 would-be national team players to Indonesia's SEA Games task force for screening. "They have undergone the first health and physical tests and passed 90 percent of them so far," Chemby said. He said the task force ruled only 15 slots would be available in the men's futsal side. Indonesia will not compete in the women's division.