The women’s singles finalists, Carolina Marin and Tai Tzu Ying walked into Impact Arena in the Toyota Thailand Open to lock horn for the second time to win a Super 1000 title. One can only imagine what a match it could be between Rio Olympic Champion, former world number one, Marin and current world number one, Tai Tzu Ying.
The match began well with both players playing point to point. In the first half of the first game, Tai Tzu played some really good attack, and Marin’s defence was exposed. Tai took a two-point lead going into the mid-game interval with a forehand smash down the line.
Marin came back level at 13-13. In a spree of picking up points with her powerful smashes and errors from Tai Tzu, she took a lead 18-13. Tai Tzu broke the stream with a cross-court block, forcing an error from the Spaniard. However, Marin did not let her guard down and inched closer to the game points.
At 17-20 with Marin in the lead. Tai Tzu played a straight round the head smash, saving a game point. She saved yet another one by forcing an error out of an impatient Marin in flat play.
Carolina wrapped up the game 21-19 in her favour nevertheless.
Complete domination by the Spaniard
The second game was dominated by the Olympic champion. Tai Tzu looked out of rhythm and made several mistakes. Marin stormed off into a 4-1 lead in the very beginning. The Taiwanese managed to play a few good rallies, controlling the shuttle and winning point only in flashes. She was visibly struggling in her game, just like last week’s final.
It may be mentioned here that her fitness level genuinely is a matter of concern as she definitely is not at her best.
She showed some grit and controlled strokes in her game against Ratchanok in the semi-final, but couldn’t really keep up the momentum today to give a good fight.
She is a player who matches Marin with pace, but since last week she hasn’t been able to do that at all.
It was a 4-11 lead for Marin at the mid-game interval. Marin was playing with high pace and aggression. In no time she was at 17-9 lead and then 13-20 with 7 match point opportunities. The number one player surprisingly came up with some well-constructed rallies and saved 4 match points before Marin sealed the match with a powerful smash.
As a matter of fact, Carolina Marin has been in 4 Super1000 finals and won them all. And in another feat, she has now won two Super 1000 titles in two weeks! Take a bow! These victories are special for the lady as not only they come after recovering from a career-threatening injury, but she’s also recovering from a personal tragedy of losing her father early 2020.
In spite of the final clash between the titans not being at a level as expected, It’s been two weeks of fantastic badminton in women’s singles.
“I feel very unfortunate that I made a lot of mistakes today. I know that Marin is fast, so I tried to keep up with her speed, but Marin played aggressively today. I couldn’t control myself from making unforced errors” said the runner-up to the BWF.
Carolina Marin said “I’m really happy, to win two titles in two weeks is amazing. I said to myself and to my team that when we finish 2020 I want to be like a new player with a new mindset, more focussed on the game. I wanted to keep improving my game.“
“I expected a different game than last week. She had to change something if she had to beat me. So my preparation for today was to keep going, keep pushing her, keep the rally going, not make easy mistakes. I knew she was more tired than me, because she played a long match yesterday, so if she wanted to play a long rally, I was prepared for that. This was one of the keys for the game.“I hope to continue like this. On Wednesday we start a new tournament. I’ve never won this (World Tour Finals) so it will be tough. We’ve been here for three weeks; there’s one more week to go. I have to take it game by game. It will be five more matches, so I will celebrate this victory first and then I will prepare.”
She also thanked her coach and her entire support team, without whom such feats would not have been possible. Her goals for this year are the Olympics and the World Championships. What a start for Marin for such goals with two magnificent back to back victories!