Japan take on second seeds South Korea in the title tie of the inaugural Robot Badminton Asia Mixed Team Championships in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam on Sunday.
The third seeds are going into the final on a high after having beaten heavyweights China 3-1 in their semi-final tie on Saturday. Japan were trailing 0-1 after having lost their mixed doubles rubber but Takeshi Kamura and Keigo Sonoda brought them back with a Men's doubles win after which Akane Yamaguchi and Kenta Nishimoto won their singles matches to help their team take a big step towards title.
However, on Sunday, Japan will be facing one of the most consistent, all-round sides to have played the ongoing tournament. Unlike many other teams, South Korea have arrived in Vietnam with their top-ranked shuttlers of the likes of Son Wan Ho, Sung Ji Hyun, Chang Ye Na and Lee So Hee.
The results have followed their way as South Korea have looked unstoppable right from the group stages of the tournament. After beating Sri Lanka and India to top Group D, the second-seeded team made light work of Chinese Taipei and Thailand, in the quarter-final and semi-final, respectively.
Son and Sung will start as favourites to win their singles rubbers against the Japanese side today. However, the battle between doubles units from both the teams is likely to decide the outcome. WIth the likes of top-ranked Men's doubles pair of Takeshi Kamura/Keigo Sonoda and Women's doubles unit Misaki Matsutomo/Ayaka Takahashi in their ranks, Japan will fancy their chances against South Korea.
The win against China would also have boosted their confidence but with the inaugural title up for grabs, it will all come down to which of the finalists handles the nerves better on the big day.
Singapore: Eleven Sports
Malaysia: Astro Supersport 4
Possible Line-up: Kenta Nishimoto (MS), Akane Yamaguchi (WS), Takeshi Kamura/Keigo Sonoda (MD), Misaki Matsutomo/Ayaka Takahashi (WD), Arisa Higashino/Yuta Watanabe (XD)
Possible Line-up: Son Wan Ho (MS), Sung Ji Hyun (WS), Kim Gi Jung/Yoo Yeon Seong (MD), Chang Ye Na/Lee So Hee (WD), Chae Yoo Jung/SolGyu Choi (XD)