Lee Zii Jia vs Kento Momota is set to be tonight’s key Sudirman Cup showdown as Malaysia face Japan to determine the Group D champion after both nations won their opening two group matches, and the Malaysian believes the Japanese would be out for revenge.
Malaysia edged past England 3-2 in their opening match and thrashed Egypt 5-0, while Japan won both ties comfortably 5-0.
Ahead of the big showdown, Lee said Momota would be eager to atone for the latter's defeat at the All-England.
“Both of us will be out to prove a big point. My match against Momota is so important, because firstly we do not have many tournaments now. So playing and beating him will be important to maintain my confidence.
“I believe he is also seeking a much needed confidence victory. I saw his match [vs England] the other day. It looked like he was lacking in confidence, but he will come back stronger. He is Momota after all.
“He has gone through so much, but he’s got a strong character and he will be back. I know he will want revenge after our last meeting. But I want to maintain what I did the last time against him,” said Lee.
On Tuesday, Momota kicked off his campaign with an uninspiring 22-20, 21-10 victory over England’s Johnnie Torjussen, while Lee had no issues with the Englishman a day earlier to win 21-4, 21-15.
Back in March, the 23-year-old beat Momota in straight games at the All-England quarter-finals and went on to lift the title for his biggest career win to date.
If Lee earns a point against the world number one, it could come at a crucial stage of the contest as the men’s singles are expected to play in the third match.
Aaron Chia-Soh Wooi Yik will most likely face Yugo Kobayashi-Takuro Hoki in the men’s doubles, while S. Kisona could be up against Nozomi Okuhara in the women’s singles.
Pearly Tan-M.Thinaah could play Nami Matsuyama-Chiharu Shida in the women’s doubles, and in the mixed doubles it should be Hoo Pang Ron-Cheah Yee See vs Yuta Watanabe-Arisa Higashino.