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Kento Momota, Japanese World No 1 has started training with his national squad. -NSTP/EIZAIRI SHAMSUDIN
Kento Momota, Japanese World No 1 has started training with his national squad. -NSTP/EIZAIRI SHAMSUDIN

KUALA LUMPUR: Not even a tragic road accident can keep Japan's Kento Momota away from the badminton court.

It is learnt that the Japanese World No 1 has started training with his national squad - three weeks after escaping death in Malaysia.

On Jan 13, Momota, 26, along with coach, Yu Hirayama, physiotherapist, Akifumi Morimoto and Badminton World Federation (BWF) official, William Thomas, were involved in a crash (while on the way uala Lumpur International Airport. Their van driver N. Bavan was killed in the accident.

Momota suffered a nose fracture and required stitches while the others were treated for minor injuries.

The accident, which took place near Serdang, came hours after Momota had clinched the Malaysia Masters title at the Axiata Arena in Bukit Jalil.

Momota, who is the gold medal favourite at this year's Tokyo Olympics, is expected to defend his All England title on March 11-15.

He is also expected to return to Kuala Lumpur for the Malaysia Open on March 31-April 5.

Last year, Momota came agonisingly close but was denied the Malaysian Open crown by Lee Chong Wei.

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