Jakarta: Japanese rising star shuttler Kento Momota upstaged Denmark’s defending champion and third seed Jan O. Jorgensen in the men’s singles final, while Thailand’s Ratchanok Intanon clinched the women’s singles title at the $800,000 Indonesia Open Superseries Premier on Sunday.
In a nail-biting 66-minute battle, the two-time world junior champion Momota showed grit and tenacity as he chased down every shot and battled for every point to a well-deserved upset win of 16-21, 21-19, 21-7.
Momota went down 16-21 in the first set, but never gave up and continued to engage the Dane in long rallies, formidable net play and on-point aggressive smashes to win the second set with a slim 21-19 scoreline.
There was a smile of triumph on his face as he took control of the third set. Last year’s men’s singles winner Jorgensen cracked under pressure and hit either too long or wide to trail by a wide margin and hand the men’s singles title to Momota.
“I was nervous in the first game. Then I convinced myself that if I could win the second game, I would win the whole match,” Momota said. “In future, I want to strengthen myself mentally,” he added.
Jorgensen said he was “really disappointed” with his performance, especially in the second set.
“This was my game and I think I had all the chances I needed when I was leading 16-14 in the second set. Had been leading all the way so yes… really disappointing,” he said.
In the third set, Momota “got a good start and he made some easy points and I made some mistakes”, he said.
“And then suddenly he had a big lead and it’s tough to catch up,” he added.
In the women’s singles final, former world champion and World No. 6 Ratchanok beat Japan’s World No. 35 Yui Hashimoto 21-12, 21-10 in 42 minutes.
The 20-year-old Thai took home prize money of US$60,000 (about 2 million baht) while Yui earned $30,400 (about one million baht).
In April, Ratchanok was crowned the Asian badminton champion after a win over top seed Li Xuerui in Wuhan. It was her first victory over the world number three since last year.
Ratchanok will fly to Singapore on Tuesday to play in the team event at the SEA Games.
Meanwhile South Korea’s Ko Sung Hyun and Shin Baek Choel beat China’s Fu Haifeng and Zhang Nan 21-16, 16-21, 21-19 in 53 minutes to win the men’s double title.
In the women’s doubles final, China’s Tang Jinhua and Tian Qing defeated Indonesia’s Nitya Krishinda Maheswari and Greysia Polii 21-11, 21-10 in 45 minutes.
The mixed doubles title went to Xu Chen and Ma Jin, who beat Zhang Nan and Zhao Yunlei 21-17, 21-16 in 45 minutes in an all-Chinese final.