Badminton world No. 1 Kento Momota, three others injured in MEX highway crash, van driver killed.
Top shuttler Kento suffered a broken nose and received stitches to his lips following a crash on Monday (Jan 13) morning.
Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman said Momota and three others, who also suffered injuries following the crash that killed the driver of the van the group was travelling in, are currently being treated at the Putrajaya Hospital.
“According to the doctors, so far all four are recovering well and are in a stable condition.
“We are monitoring all of them very closely.
“As the minister, we give our full commitment to ensure that they receive the best treatment.
Japan’s coach Park Joo Bong (L) with Syed Saddiq.
“The doctors are well trained and have done a great job,” said Syed Saddiq to reporters at the Putrajaya Hospital after visiting the crash victims.
Also seen visiting the victims were BAM president Datuk Seri Norza Zakaria, BAM secretary Datuk Kenny and Japan’s coach Park Joo Bong.
The van ferrying the four crashed into a lorry at KM13.7 of the Maju Expressway (MEX Highway) on Monday morning.
The soil-laden 30-tonne lorry was reportedly moving at a snail’s pace.
The van driver, N Bavan, 24, was killed on the spot.
In the aftermath of the collision, the front of the van is seen lodged into the rear of the lorry.
Bavan was found pinned to his seat.
Fire and Rescue Department officials took a while to retrieve his body from the wreckage.
Two other Japanese victims in the accident have been identified as 35-year-old badminton coach Hirayama Yu and 42-year-old physiotherapist Morimoto Akifumi.
Another victim has been identified as William Thomas, a 30-year-old Badminton World Federation technical officer from Britain.
According to Selangor Fire and Rescue Department (Bomba) director Norazam Khamis, Bomba received a call at around 4.57am regarding the incident, with rescuers arriving at the scene at 5.15am this morning.
“We received a report of a tourist van crashing into the back of a 30-tonne lorry laden with earth, where four victims suffered minor injuries, and the driver died at the scene after he ended up lodged between the two vehicles,” said Norazam.
The group were on their way to the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), after being involved in the Perodua Malaysia Masters 2020 badminton tournament.
Kento had won in the men’s single’s category, defeating Denmark’s Viktor Axelsen 24-22, 21-11.