SEOUL: Fallen former world No 1 Kento Momota won his first badminton title in two years today with a victory over Japanese compatriot Koki Watanabe at the Korea Masters.
Now ranked a lowly 52 in the world, Momota won 21-16, 21-15 against the world No 26 in the final in Gwangju.
The Korea Masters did not boast the very top players in the world but the title will be a huge boost to the 29-year-old Momota after a difficult few years.
Momota is a two-time world champion but his once brilliant career has been in freefall ever since a car crash in January 2020 in Malaysia.
The badminton ace was badly hurt and the driver of the vehicle he was travelling in killed.
He had won a record-breaking 11 titles in 2019, losing just six of the 73 matches he played and looking every inch a legend in the making.
But the crash left him with double vision and needing surgery on a bone near his eye.
His last title before today was in Indonesia in November 2021.