Badminton: Japan's Momota returns to defend his OUE S'pore Open crown, nine of top 10 in field

Kento Momota of Japan playing against Son Wan Ho of Korea (not pictured) during their men's singles semi-final match at the Badminton Asia Team Championships on Feb 20, 2016.
Kento Momota of Japan playing against Son Wan Ho of Korea (not pictured) during their men's singles semi-final match at the Badminton Asia Team Championships on Feb 20, 2016.PHOTO: AFP

SINGAPORE - World No. 3 Kento Momota will return to defend his title at the OUE Singapore Open next month.

The Japanese shuttler is the reigning men's singles champion at the tournament, which the 21-year-old won last year to become the first badminton player from Japan to win a Superseries men's singles title.

That victory also made Momota the youngest Superseries champion at 20, and he also won the season-ending Superseries Finals last December.

The 2012 world junior champion leads a 21-player contingent from Japan who have confirmed their participation at the April 12-17 event held at the Singapore Indoor Stadium.

"Last year's Singapore Open was a turning point in my career and I am looking forward to coming back this April to defend my title," said Momota.

He will be joined by Denmark's world No. 4 Jan Jorgensen, who is also pencilled in to compete in the final Superseries event before the Olympic Games.

Their inclusion means that the OUE Singapore Open will have a star-studded field, as nine of the world's top 10 players will be making their appearance in the Republic.

Meanwhile, South Korea have also confirmed their team for the event, and they will be sending men's doubles world No. 1 pair of Lee Yong Dae and Yoo Yeon Seong and women's world No. 4 Sung Ji Hyun.

Hosts Singapore will be fielding a contingent of 24 players, led by Derek Wong and Liang Xiaoyu.