Japan’s world champion Kento Momota moved serenely through to the quarter-finals of the Badminton World Federation Singapore Open today with a 21-11, 21-11 win over India’s H S Prannoy.
The result was in marked contrast to his first-round battle in Singapore Indoor Stadium against Prannoy’s compatriot Sai Praneeth, who took the world number one to 20-20 in the third game before succumbing.
Momota will next meet a third Indian player, sixth seed Srikkanth Kidambi, who earned a 21-12, 23-21 second-round win over Denmark’s Hans-Christian Vittinghus.
Meanwhile, Vittinghus’s compatriot, former world champion and third seed Viktor Axelsen, secured his quarter-final place with a 21-14, 15-21, 21-12 win over Thailand’s Kantaphon Wangcharoen.
Axelsen’s next opponent will be Indonesia’s Jonatan Christie, who beat Malaysia’s Lee Sii Jia 21-13, 21-12.
“This is my fourth time meeting Li Zii Jia,” Christie said afterwards,
“I think we know each other’s weaknesses and strengths.
“But I am not sure why in the last two matches that I have faced him, it seems he is under a lot of pressure.
“He is a very good player, he has a very good attack and defence but he made a lot of unforced errors.
“His spirit has been quite down in the past two matches.”
In the other half of the men’s singles draw, Christie’s compatriot Anthony Ginting beat Kenta Nishimoto of Japan 21-10, 21-16 to earn a quarter-final against China’s fourth seed and Rio 2016 Olympic champion Chen Long, who defeated India’s Kashyap Parupalli 21-9, 15-21, 21-16.
Second seed Chou Tien-chen of Chinese Taiwan also reached the last eight with a 21-18, 21-10 win over Denmark’s Jan Jorgensen.
He will meet India’s Sameer Verna, who beat China’s Lu Guangzu 21-15, 21-18.
Chou's compatriot Tai Tzu-ying, the world number one and top seed in the women’s singles, earned her quarter-final place with a 21-15, 21-18 win over China’s Chen Xiaoxin, and will now meet South Korea’s seventh seed Sung Ji-hyun, who beat Indonesia’s Ruselli Hartawan 21-17, 21-7.
Japan’s third seed Akane Yamaguchi reached the last eight with a 21-6, 21-11 win over Grace Chua of Singapore and meets Thailand’s fifth seed Ratchanok Intanon, who beat China’s Han Yue 19-21, 21-11, 21-13.
Japan’s second seed Nozomi Okuhara beat Thailand’s Busanan Ongbamrungphan 18-21, 21-15, 21-13 to move into the last eight, where she will play India’s sixth seed Saina Nehwal, a 21-16, 18-21, 21-19 winner over Thailand’s Pompawee Chochuwong.
The other women’s quarter-final will be between China’s Cai Yanyan, a 21-16, 21-18 winner over compatriot Li Xuerui, and India’s fourth seed V Sindh Pusarla, who defeated Mia Blichfeldt of Denmark 21-13, 21-19.