Kento Momota Enters 2023 Korea Masters Semis

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Kento Momota advances to the 2023 Korea Masters semi-finals. (photo: Shi Tang/Getty Images)
Kento Momota advances to the 2023 Korea Masters semi-finals. (photo: Shi Tang/Getty Images)

Gwangju: Kento Momota secures a spot in the semi-finals of the 2023 Korea Masters after defeating Malaysia’s Soong Joo Ven 21-16, 21-11 in the men’s singles quarter-finals on Friday. Despite his current world ranking at 52nd place, Momota’s victory marks a notable comeback in Gwangju, especially after facing early eliminations in the first round throughout 2023.

In the second round, Momota faced off against Germany’s Kai Schaefer, defeating him 21-17, 21-16. The quarter-final match against Soong Joo Ven showcased Momota’s resilience, as he widened the gap in the first set with a 6-1 run after the score was tied at 15-15. In the second set, he maintained control, securing his spot in the semi-finals after an eight-month hiatus from such a stage in the BWF World Tour.

On Saturday, Momota Kento will definitely fight for his first ticket to the final since advancing to the 2022 Malaysian Open final in July 2022. At that time, he lost to Viktor Axelsen of Denmark 4-21, 7-21 in the final.

Momota’s journey to the final is anticipated, with his opponent in the top four being China’s Lei Lanxi, currently ranked 57th in the world. Lei Lanxi expressed excitement at the prospect of facing Momota, highlighting the opportunity to learn from the seasoned player. However, he acknowledged the need to balance excitement with a focused approach, especially considering the similarity in their left-handed playing styles.

The men’s singles semi-finals will also feature Wang Tzu Wei of Chinese Taipei against Koki Watanabe of Japan.

In men’s doubles, Chinese Taipei has three men’s pairs advanced to the semi-finals. The reigning World Champions Kang Min Hyuk/Seo Seung Jae of Korea will play against Lee Jhe-Huei/Yang Po-Hsuan of Chinese Taipei, while Lee Yang/Wang Chi-Lin will set up a clash with their teammates Lee Fang-Chih/Lee Fang-Jen.

Malaysia has two mixed pairs made it to the semi-finals. Chen Tang Jie/Toh Ee Wei will battle reigning world champions Seo Seung Jae/Chae Yu Jung of Korea while Goh Soon Huat/Shevon Jemie Lai will take on Jiang Zhen Bang/Wei Ya Xin of China.

Here are the women’s singles and women’s doubles semi-final line-up:

Women’s Singles:
Kim Ga Eun vs. Asuka Takahashi
Ester Nurumi Tri Wardoyo vs. Tomoka Miyazaki [pfq]

Women’s Doubles:
Rui Hirokami/Yuna Kato vs. Hsu Yin-hui/Lin Jhih Yun
Sayaka Hobara/Yui Suizu vs. Jeong Na Eun/Kim Hye Jeong

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