Taiwan’s top female shuttler loses out on 4th BWF World Tour Finals title

Three-time winner Tai Tzu-ying (???) had to settle for second in badminton's season-ending 2022 HSBC BWF World Tour Finals, losing 18-21, 20-22 to Japan's Akane Yamaguchi in Sunday's final in Bangkok.

Tai was neck and neck with Yamaguchi early on before making several mistakes to fall behind 9-12, when Yamaguchi stepped up her aggressive attacking play and went on to claim the first game.

In the second game, the players tied the score at 7-7 before Yamaguchi increased the pressure on Tai, winning four straight points as she pulled ahead 20-18.

Tai managed to save two match points but failed to hold out in the end, losing to Yamaguchi in what was their 19th meeting.

In a post-match interview, Tai told CNA that while she felt her defense had been weak, she praised Yamaguchi's determination in chasing down points.

With the 2022 season now over, Tai said she felt her performances had been "not too bad."

Although she has not set any particular goal for 2023, Tai said she expected March and April to test her fitness due to a packed match schedule.

The Taiwanese shuttler is a three-time former World Tour Finals women's singles champion, winning titles in 2014, 2016, and 2020, and this is the sixth time she has reached the final.

The season-ending finals of the 20-tournament BWF World Tour circuit carries a total purse of US$1.5 million and features the top eight individual players and pairs in the men's and women's categories, as well as the top eight mixed doubles, in the HSBC BWF World Tour Rankings.

The tournament runs from Dec. 7 to Dec. 11.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel