Denmark Open: Kento Momota vs Sai Praneeth - Preview and Prediction
Denmark throws up a dazzling encounter as World number one, Kento Momota takes on Sai Praneeth in the pre-quarter-finals, today.
The Japanese began his campaign beating Wong Wing Ki Vincent by 21-15, 21-17. The defending champion's attacking game coupled up with a lot of trick shots enabled him to pounce upon Vincent's mistakes.
Praneeth, on the other hand, is in fantastic form. He stunned two-time Olympic Champion, Lin Dan 21-14, 21-17 in the first round.The Chinese legend struggled to find a rhythm and made a lot of unforced errors. It was one of the biggest wins for Praneeth as he triumphed in a battle against one of the world's best players.
Systematic destruction was witnessed as Praneeth wrapped up the match in just 35 minutes winning 42 points compared to Lin Dan's 31. The ageing Lin Dan hampered by multiple injuries this season could not withstand the youthful exuberance of the Indian.
Coming to the match, Momota is in terrific touch. He recently won the Korean Open defeating number two, Chou Tien Chen by 21-19, 21-17 in the final.
It is really inspiring that he has made a strong comeback after the testing times when he was denied a spot in the Rio Olympics 2016 for visiting an illegal casino.
Ahead of the Olympics 2020 to be held in his home country, Momota is peaking in the right direction.
Though he defeated the Indian by 21-13, 21-8 in the World Championship semi-finals held this year in Basel; He should be wary of Praneeth's ability to surprise. A weak start can put Momota in a difficult situation from where bouncing back in the game will be quite difficult.
The head to head record is skewed in favour of Momota who leads 4-2. After Praneeth won the first two matches against the Japanese, Momota won four matches in a row. The Japanese holds the edge in experience and form while Praneeth will look to cause some damage by taking at least a game off.
The fans can expect rampaging rallies, delicate drops and scintillating smashes as two fighters battle it out.
Prediction - Kento Momota to win in three games
Cover Image Credits - scroll.in