BADMINTON: Three wins for China and Momota makes history at the $1,000,000 All-England Open

Defending Japan Open champ Kento Momota of Japan (Photo: BWF)

The big money – $1,000,000 in prize money – brought out all of the no. 1 -ranked players and teams in the world for the Yonex All-England Open at the Arena Birmingham.

Two of the five won.

Japan’s Kento Momota continued to show he is the world’s best men’s Singles player with a three-set win over Denmark’s no. 6-ranked Viktor Axelsen and the Mixed Doubles team of Seiwei Zhang and Yaqiong Huang (CHN) dispatched no. 3-ranked Yuta Watanabe and Arisa Higashino (JPN) in straight sets.

The other three top-ranked entries had mixed results. Tzu Ying Tai (TPE) reached the women’s final, but lost to no. 4 Yufei Chen of China in straight sets. In the women’s Doubles, no. 5 Qingchen Chen and Yifan Jia of China beat no. 1 Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota in the semis and then won the final against no. 3 Mayu Matsumoto and Wakana Hagahara.

Indonesia’s top-ranked Marcus Gideon and Kevin Sukamuljo (INA) lost their first match and were eliminated, but countrymen Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan (no. 7) won instead, beating surprise finalists Aaron Chia and Wooi Yik Soh (MAS) in the final.

Momota became the first Japanese men’s Singles winner at the All-England, he said afterwards, “It makes me very happy to become the first from my country to win the men’s singles title at the All England. It is not only my achievement, it is a tribute to the entire team as all of us have worked very hard for this. This title is comparable to the World Championships; however, I don’t want to be satisfied just yet.” Summaries:

BWF World Tour/All-England Open
Birmingham (GBR) ~ 6-10 March 2019
(Full results here)

Men’s Singles: 1. Kento Momota (JPN); 2. Viktor Axelsen (DEN); 3. Ka Long Angus Long (HKG) and Yuqi Shi (CHN). Semis: Momota d. Long, 21-19, 21-11; Axelsen d. Shi, 22-20, 13-21, 21-9. Final: Momota d. Axelsen, 21-11, 15-21, 21-15.

Men’s Doubles: 1. Mohammed Ahsan/Hendra Setiawan (INA); 2. Aaron Chia/Wooi Yik Soh (MAS); 3. Takeshi Kamura/Keigo Sonoda (JPN) and Fajar Alfian/Muhammad Rian Ardianto (INA). Semis: Ahsan/Setiwan d. Kamura/Setiawan, 21-19, 21-16; Chia/Soh d. Alfian/Ardianto, 12-21, 22-20, 21-19. Final: Ahsan/Setiawan d. Chia/Soh, 11-21, 21-14, 21-12.

Women’s Singles: 1. Yufei Chen (CHN); 2. Tzu Ying Tai (TPE); 3. Akane Yamaguchi (JPN) and Nozomi Okuhara (JPN). Semis: Chen d. Okuhara, 21-17, 21-11; Tai d. Yamaguchi, 21-13, 10-21, 21-8. Final: Chen d. Tai, 21-17; 21-17.

Women’s Doubles: 1. Qingchen Chen/Yifan Jia (CHN); 2. Mayu Matsumoto/Wakana Nagahara (JPN); 3. Yuki Fukushima/Sayaka Hirota (JPN) and Shiho Tanaka/Kohau Yonemoto (JPN). Semis: Chen/Jia d. Fukushima/Hirota, 21-18, 23-21; Matsumoto/Nagahara d. Tanaka/Yonemoto, 21-11, 21-12. Final: Chen/Jia d. Matsumoto/Nagihara, 18-21, 22-20, 21-11.

Mixed Doubles: 1. Siwei Zhang/Yaqiong Huang (CHN); 2. Yuta Watanabe/Arisa Higashino (JPN); 3. Soon Huat Goh/Shevon Jemie Lai (MAS) and Praveen Jordan/Melati Daeva Oktavianti (INA). Semis: Watanabe/Higashino d. Goh/Lai, 21-16, 21-13; Zhang/Huang d. Jordan/Oktavianti, 13-21, 22-20, 21-13. Final: Zhang/Huang d. Watanabe/Higashino, 21-17, 22-20.