Nguyen Tien Minh entered the men’s singles quarterfinals of the Japan Yonex Open in Tokyo after beating host player Kento Momota in the second round Thursday.
The fifth seeded Vietnamese won the first set 21-17 but the Japanese, ranked 31st, suddenly seemed to raise his game when the eighth-ranked Vietnamese was leading 13-3 in the second.
Momota took the set 21-19.
But the 30-year-old Vietnamese player's experience proved decisive in the final set, which he won 21-15 to close the match in 82 minutes.
In the quarterfinals of the Super Series event, Tien Minh will clash with a familiar opponent -- 30th ranked Ajay Jayaram of India.
Minh has beaten Jayaram twice in international tournaments but lost both times in the Indian Badminton League in August where he played for Pune Pistons and Jayaram for Hyderabad Hotshots.