Top seed Tai Tzu Ying takes on second seed Carolina Marin in the Women's singles title match of 2017 Malaysia Open at the Jalan Stadium in Kuching.
Tai, the 2013 champion, survived a tough battle against South Korea's Sung Ji Hyun, whom she had beaten in last month's All England Championships as well, in the semi-final outing yesterday. After losing the first game 20-22, the world number one fought back to win the match in an hour and two minutes.
On the other hand, 2015 champion Marin just needed 54 minutes to make light work of Japan's Nozomi Okuhara 23-21, 21-19 to enter her second consecutive final after her run to the title match in India Open earlier this month.
There is little to separate these two shuttlers, who are meeting for the eighth time in their careers later today. While Marin leads 4-3 in their head-to-head clashes, it was Tai who won their last two meetings (2016 China and Hong Kong Open).
While both are known for their deception and quick movement across the court, Tai has been at her best since racing to title in Hong Kong last year. She dethroned Marin from the top spot after the win and has not looked back since then. The 22-year-old went on to win the World Superseries Finals in Dubai last year and returned to competitive action only at All England Championships last month, which she won without being challenged much.
On the other hand, Marin's form had dipped after she won the Olympic gold last year and she has been without a title since then after being plagued by injury concerns as well. However, the 23-year-old Spaniard seems to have hit form with two consecutive final appearances (German Open and India Open). Despite her recent exploits, the world number three has to produce her best game to stand a chance against Tai, who is looking set to conquer the circuit this season.
India: Star Sports 2
Malaysia: Astro Supersport
Singapore: StarHub Sports