The 23-year-old, whose idol is Lee Chong Wei, did produce a performance that belonged to the attacking school of the Malaysian legend, all jump smashes and aggressive poaching at the net.
After getting eclipsed in the first game, crafty veteran Nguyen was in sight of the second, but the Azerbaijani kept things tight to come out winner at 21-14 21-18.
“I feel good, because I could play what I’d wanted. The second game very close, and at 18-all, I was a little nervous as it’s my first Olympics. But I could finish the match,” said Dwicahyo.
“I have an attacking style. I’ve always liked to play that way. Growing up, my idol was Lee Chong Wei, I liked his style and movement and footwork,” said Dwicahyo.
The victory was a hard-earned reward for the Indonesia-born Dwicahyo, who moved to Azerbaijan four years ago as he was unable to break into the Indonesian senior national team. Having played two World Junior Championships for Indonesia, and his senior career stalling, he left for Azerbaijan as it offered him the chance to continue playing while pursuing his education at university.
“Azerbaijan is good for me, because they asked me to play. Many of my friends went to other countries, as sparring partners or as coaches. But I wanted to continue playing as I’m still young and I can improve,” Dwicahyo said. “We have a lot of players in Indonesia, and I could never become No.1 among the juniors, so I couldn’t make the senior national team. One of my coaches asked me if I want to go to another country to play. I accepted and now I’m in Azerbaijan.
“This is my first Olympics. My family is so happy. I had a dream that I could go to the Olympics, and now I’m here. My federation is very happy because we’ve been working hard for two years. And now we did it, we qualified for Olympics.”
Dwicahyo will have his opportunity to make an even bigger impact when he takes on Anders Antonsen, who’s a medal contender. He knows what he’s up against, but promised to bring out all his weapons.
“He’s a top player. For tomorrow, I will just play what I have, and I’ll do my best, try my technique. I don’t want to think of a win or loss. So it’s 70 for him and 30 for me.”