The tale of the hare and tortoise race that everyone has heard because formative years has a simplistic explanation – sluggish and constant wins the race. But the gradual is probably there only for alliteration because it’s miles the steady conviction in one’s capability that matters inside the very last evaluation. If you have any doubt, ask Kidambi Srikanth and Viktor Axelsen how it feels to race to 21 factors over three games towards a sure Kento Momota.
The 24-year-vintage Japanese has been on a roll inside the last year and a half, prevailing every principal name, including the Asian and global championship. On Sunday, he has become the primary Japanese men’s singles player to win the All England identify along with his 10th consecutive win over Axelsen. The former global number one Dane added out his whole heavy artillery of booming smashes and rapid-paced attack; however, he could overpower his opponent handiest in one recreation earlier than going down 21-11, 15-21, 21-15 in an hour and 21 minutes.
This has been the sample of maximum Momota victories ever since he again from the only-yr suspension for gambling in an online casino. His warring parties tend to come out all guns blazing to gain initial benefit in opposition to arguably the nice participant on the circuit. It is best to be sucked into honey entice of lengthy rallies and percent play before they destroy mentally and bodily. Momota then surely tightens the noose and forces them into abject surrender.
If girls international primary Tai Tzu Ying mesmerizes you with the style of her strokes and the audacity with which she performs them, Momota makes you fall in love with the control that he has at the net. Mind you, Momota isn’t a retriever who can not bulldoze opponents with attacking play. He poses almost all the strokes in his repertoire to win matches on a canter; however, he prefers to pace himself in a manner that his warring parties begin to resolve long before the end line. He movements around his opponent throughout the courtroom before pouncing at the openings with what appears like the simplest of winners.
And everybody who has played aggressive sports activities at any level will let you know that to reap this Zen-like approach isn’t easy. It’s virtually not pretty much skills, which Momota possesses in abundance. But so do Srikanth, Axelsen, and absolutely everyone within the top-10 or 20 within the world scores. It’s approximately how you utilize these competencies in the maximum simple however powerful way that separates the legends from different champions. And in this regard, Momota displays why he is the heir apparent to his early life idol Lin Dan.
It’s possibly becoming that there are many similarities in the manner the Chinese superstar played at his peak and the way Momota goes approximately his process now. Both have constructed their game around a sturdy basis of protective talents, splendid court docket insurance, potential to peg away at each travel, and pressure their fighters to work more difficult-to-win factors. And they make playing badminton appearance so simple, that all and sundry can fall in love with the sport.
That Momota became marked for a stellar badminton profession turned into in no way doubtful. For the reason that he introduced his arrival with the aid of becoming the first Japanese guys’ singles participant to win the BWF World junior title in 2012, the real query becomes how big a star ought to be. He showed his elegance by assisting Japan to conquer the Thomas Cup in 2014 and then became u . S .’s first men’s singles international championship medallist.
Just out of his teenagers then, he changed into extra competitive, may want to play to the gallery at times, and wanted to revel in the rich existence of an upcoming superstar. He additionally rose to the arena-wide variety two ratings; however, he by no means looked as intimidating as he’s now. And simply while it gave the la that his career might pass into some other equipment, he became banned with the aid of the countrywide federation for playing in an online casino.
A few days later, pics of Momota getting intimate with a hostess in a KTV Lounge have been revealed by way of a Japanese magazine. Japan’s lengthy-serving national coach and 5-time international champion Park Joo Bong had then told Strait Times what he felt was lacking in Momota. “If you best have abilities and exact badminton, I don’t assume you can be a champion. Discipline, if it’s now not enough, then you cannot be a world champion.