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Marin and Axelsen claim Yonex Thailand Open singles titles

Reigning Olympic champion Carolina Marin bolstered her chances of retaining her title in Tokyo later this year after claiming the Thailand Open in Bangkok yesterday over top seed Tai Tzu-ying.

Despite having a cold, fourth seed Viktor Axelsen of Denmark was electric in the men's final against Hong Kong's Angus Ng, seeded seventh, claiming the title in straight sets.

Spaniard Marin, 27, a former world No. 1, was an imposing force with razor-sharp smashes, clever net work and an unmatched level of aggression and agility.

She screamed in delight as she won match-point in the second set after steamrolling her 26-year-old opponent from Taiwan 21-9, 21-16 in 42 minutes.

"I wanted to show her from the beginning that I wanted to win," fifth seed Marin said.

Tai admitted she wasn't able to keep pace and her condition wasn't up to scratch.

"Carolina is always fast and aggressive. That is her playing style. Today, she put a lot of pressure on me," Tai said.

Axelsen, meanwhile, took just 44 minutes to triumph 21-14, 21-14 over Ng.

"I knew I had to be 110 per cent going into the final. And having not played for so long, really happy that I managed to win," Axelsen said.

Ng said he was surprised to have made it so far, despite the loss.

"I just didn't perform my best, maybe at 70 per cent today. This is the first tournament of 2021 and I didn't expect to make it to the final," he said.

Indonesia's Greysia Polii and Apriyani Rahayu were too good for Thailand's Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Rawinda Prajongjai in the women's doubles final, prevailing 21-15, 21-12.

In the mixed doubles, top-seeded Thais Dechapol Puavaranukroh and Sapsiree Taerattanachai overcame Indonesia's Praveen Jordan and Melati Daeva Oktavianti 21-3, 20-22, 21-18.

In the men's doubles, Taiwan's Lee Yang and Wang Chi-lin beat Malaysia's Goh V Shem and Tan Wee Kiong 21-16, 21-23, 21-19. - AFP

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