** Indonesia vs. Thailand: Badminton Drama at the Asia Team Championship 2024**

Trang Napie

Sun Feb 25 2024

Asia Team Championship
Kento Momota
Lee Zii Jia
PV Sindhu

Former world number 1 Kento Momota watched helplessly as his Japanese team was eliminated in the semi-finals of the Asia Team Badminton Championship 2024. Meanwhile, Malaysia and India secured their spots in the finals, setting the stage for an intense showdown between the two nations.

In the men's singles, Lee Zii Jia from Malaysia started strong by defeating Kenta Nishimoto 21-18, 21-15, giving his team an early lead. The Malaysian doubles pair of Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik extended the lead by coming from behind to beat the Japanese pair of Akira Koga and Taichi Saito 15-21, 21-17, 21-10. Despite Koki Watanabe's efforts to keep Japan's hopes alive by defeating Leong Jun Hao 19-21, 21-12, 21-19, Malaysia's Goh Sze Fei and Nur Izzuddin Rumsani remained composed and secured the victory over Kenya Mitsuhashi and Hiroki Okamura 21-15, 21-19, advancing Malaysia to the finals with a 3-1 overall win.

On the women's side, Japan suffered a heartbreaking defeat to India in a closely contested match. Even though PV Sindhu of India lost her singles and doubles matches, Anmol Kharb's surprising victory over Natsuki Nidaira helped India secure a place in the finals for the first time in history. Aya Ohori's triumph over PV Sindhu added to Japan's woes, providing a glimmer of hope for India.

With Sindhu teaming up with Ashwini Ponnappa, India missed an early victory opportunity as they lost to Rena Miyaura and Ayako Sakuramoto 21-14, 21-11 in the fourth match. However, Tanisha Crasto and Gayatri Gopichand leveled the score for India by defeating Nami Matsuyama and Chiharu Shida 21-17, 16-21, 22-20. The unexpected win by Ashmita Chaliha over Nozomi Okuhara further solidified India's lead, setting up a thrilling final against Thailand. Thailand's top players Supanida Katethong and Busanan Ongbamrungphan helped their team advance to the finals by defeating Indonesia 3-1.

The Asia Team Badminton Championship 2024 has been full of surprises, upsets, and exceptional performances from players across the region. The finals between Malaysia and India in the men's category and India against Thailand in the women's category promise to deliver thrilling badminton action and intense competition.