The Taiwanese Tai Tzu Ying was proclaimed master of the badminton circuit this Sunday for the second time and, like the first, in 2020, at the expense of the Spaniard Carolina Marín, who shone with a beautiful game in the first set, but I will not be able to maintain control during the next two rounds (12-21, 21-14 and 21-18). Marín, a three-time world champion, one-time Olympic champion and six-time European champion, aspired to obtain the only major title missing from her record, that of the BWF circuit finals. But he did not succeed in Hangzhou (China), after a close fight with Tai for one hour and three minutes.
The theoretical tie between the two finalists, the fourth Taiwanese in the world and the fifth Spaniard, took little time to break in the first stages in favor of Marín, who made few errors, while his rival did not found no other way than to take risks and repeatedly sent the steering wheel out of bounds. Marín was brilliant near the net, with final shots at Tai’s feet. At 14-8, they played a very long point with 30 rallies which ended with the Asian on the ground, trying to achieve the impossible. Marín was tall, quick with her reflexes and extended her lead to 20-11. Tai saved the first game point, but on the second, a shot from Marín forced her to force a return.
In the second game there was no significant advantage until Tai’s 15-11, which caused doubts in the Andalusian’s game. For the first time, he made a long series of errors and his rival took advantage by punishing Marín at the net and winning the set 21-14. It was difficult for Marín to overcome this difficulty. She was seen making unusual gestures, such as raising her hand to her head in despair. But with two winners in a row (6-4) he got back to work.
Tai injured his right leg while trying to reach the shuttlecock (8-6) and took a few seconds to recover, although he was able to continue without problem. After an error from Marín, who missed a service that was going inside, and a decisive pass from Tai from the net, the Taiwanese took the advantage on a shot from the Spaniard outside (11-10 ). Marín never took the lead again. His rival showed unprecedented aggression and precision, he increased his margins and took four match points (20-16). Marín avoided the first two, but finished wide in the third.
The two finalists have played 23 times, with now one more victory, 12-11, for the Taiwanese. Of his five matches this year, three have been for the Spaniards. Marín closes the season with two titles, after his victories at the Orléans Masters in April and the European Games in July. He also made the finals of the World Championships, the Indonesian Masters and the Danish Open.