Kento Momota overpowers Lu Guangzu in to reach Badminton Asia Championships semis

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Kento Momota is on course to defend the Badminton Asia Championships title. (photo: Xinhua)
Kento Momota is on course to defend the Badminton Asia Championships title. (photo: Xinhua)

Wuhan: The men’s singles defending champion, World No. 1 Kento Momota of Japan came from a set down to beat Lu Guangzu of China 16-21, 21-11, 21-14 on Friday to enter the Badminton Asia Championships semi-finals.

In the first set, after trailing 3-5, Lu reeled off six consecutive points to take an 11-6 lead at the interval. Lu was able to withstand a tough test from gritty Momota to take the first game 21-16.

Kento Momota quickly raced to an 18-5 lead in the second set before forcing the decider by claiming the second game.

The World No. 1 Japanese became increasingly more aggressive to eventually take the third game 21-14.

Momota will meet Nguyen Tien Minh of Vietnam next.

Nguyen, hardly break a sweat when his opponent in the quarter-final, the No. 4 seed Chen Long handed the Vietnamese a walkover.

In another men’s singles quarter-final, No. 3 seed Chou Tien Chen had to fight tooth and nail for 80 minutes before finally subduing the Japanese player Kenta Nishimoto 22-20, 24-26, 21-15. Chou will meet Shi Yuqi of China in the final four.

In women’s singles, both Indian top women’s singles, Saina Nehwal and PV Sindhu have been knocked out after losing their respective quarterfinal matches on Friday. Nehwal lost 13-21, 23-21, 16-21 against No. 3 seed Akane Yamaguchi of Japan, while Sindhu was beaten 19-21, 9-21 by World No. 17 Cai Yanyan of China.

Akane Yamaguchi will meet No. 1 seed Chen Yufei in the semi-finals, while Cai Yanyan will set up an all-Chinese semi-final with compatriot He Bingjiao.

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