Wednesday, July 24, 2024 | 18:17 WIB

Sony Hendrawan, Indonesian basketball legend – FIBA Hall of Fame induction alongside Yao Ming

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Jakarta, IO – A joyful news for Indonesian basketball: our legend, Sony Hendrawan, won international recognition for his prowess with his induction into the FIBA Hall of Fame Class of 2023. On Friday, 2 June 2023, FIBA announced Sony’s name alongside nine other legendary male and female players across the world, living and having passed on, including former Chinese NBA star Yao Ming. 

Sony’s name is an eternal legend for our national basketball. He has multiple awards over the years, including the honor of IBL naming its best player award after him – the Sony Hendrawan Cup. 

“My emotions are all mixed up, but I’m mostly happy,” Sonny described the moment he was informed of his induction into the FIBA Hall of Fame. “People from both FIBA and Perbasi contacted me to inform me of this honor. Naturally, I was surprised and excited,” he said. 

Sony originated from Semarang, but his glorious career in basketball only started when he joined Sahabat Surabaya. He was part of the East Javanese team when it won the gold medal in the National Sports Week VII in Surabaya in 1969. “I worked in Surabaya at the time. After five years, I returned to Semarang to join Sahabat Semarang,” Sony said. 

Sony took part in many major championships in defense of the Red and White over the years. For example, in 1964, he and his teammates defeated the Philippines 98-86 in the Pre-Olympic match in Yokohama, Japan, even though it was the FIBA Asia (then the ABC Championship) champion the previous year. 

As part of the national team, Sony won the silver medal in the Ganefo 1966, an international sports event initiated by our illustrious proklamator Bung Karno. Indonesia only lost out to China in the Finals. In 1967, Indonesia ranked fourth in the FIBA Asia championship held in Seoul, South Korea, in the same year. “I was one of the five top scorers of the tournament, with my scoring a whole 43 points by myself when we fought against South Korea that time,” he declared proudly. 

During the round-robin championship, Indonesia won against India (130-107), Malaysia (89-80), Thailand (97-90), Singapore (110-75), and Hong Kong (94-54). We lost the remaining five matches, including the one against the Philippines, who ended up the champion. 

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