Kento Momota shows magic to stun Chen Long for Badminton Asia Championships
Japan’s Kento Momota defeated reigning Olympic champion Chen Long to clinch the men’s singles title at the Badminton Asia Championships.Updated: Apr 29, 2018 15:20 IST
Agence France-Presse, Shanghai
Japan’s Kento Momota shocked Olympic gold-medallist Chen Long to be crowned badminton’s Asian champion in a stunning upset on Sunday.
The world number 17 had never previously won a game against Chen, but he floored the strong Chinese favourite 21-17, 21-13 at the Badminton Asia Championships in Wuhan.
Momota, a compact left-hander, had Chen firmly on the back foot as he reeled off seven straight points to clinch the title in one hour when the world number three netted.
Momota clenched his fists in triumph and kissed the Japan badge on his singlet after his victory, which follows his straight-sets dismissal of Malaysian great Lee Chong Wei in the semi-finals.
The 23-year-old’s breakthrough follows a steady rise up the rankings, and comes after four previous defeats to Chen, a two-time world champion.
Earlier, Indonesian top seeds Tontowi Ahmad and Liliyana Natsir beat Wang Yilyu and Huang Dongping 17-21, 17-21 in the mixed doubles as hosts China were denied another title.
First Published: Apr 29, 2018 14:50 IST