The incredible reflex shot came during the last-eight match against Japan’s Kento Momota.

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Sports Badminton Tuesday, August 07, 2018 - 13:51

In the recently concluded BWF World Championships 2018 in China, India’s Sai Praneeth played one of the tournament’s best rallies against Japan’s sixth-seed Kento Momota during the last-eight stage. This produced one of the most incredible shots by Praneeth.

The rally took place early in the second game when Praneeth pulled out an unbelievable back-hand shot from behind his back and that too without getting a clear sight of the shuttle. It was purely a reflex action shot that left his Japanese opponent along with the crowd absolutely stunned.

After a fast and lengthy exchange between the two, Momota forced the Indian into a difficult retrieval with a delicate cross-court drop shot that left Praneeth scrambling to keep the point alive. Praneeth somehow reached and returned the shuttle to continue the epic rally.

However, Momota responded with a lightning-fast smash and looked to have secured the point. Praneeth then, in an incredible display of skill, reflexes, and court-awareness turned around and got his racket to the shuttle from behind his back to catch his Japanese opponent off-guard. Watch the video of the rally here:

Praneeth eventually lost the match 21-12 21-12. In the first round, Praneeth received a walkover from South Korea’s Son Wan Ho. He then beat Spain’s Luis Enrique Penalver and Denmark's Hans Kristien Vittinghus, both in straight games to enter the last eight.

Praneeth was the Indian who went the farthest in the men’s category with Kidambi Srikanth, HS Prannoy and Sameer Verma, all failing to progress beyond the Round of 16. Srikanth lost to Malaysian Daren Liew in straight games while Prannoy lost to Brazilian player Ygor Coelho. Sameer Verma was undone by legendary Chinese shuttler Lin Dan.

Meanwhile, in the women’s category, PV Sindhu kept the Indian flag fluttering high. She made the women’s finals but eventually came up short against Spain’s Carolina Marin to take home the silver medal.