Nozomi Okuhara loses her seventh consecutive final, Chen Yu Fei retains title | 2019 Fuzhou China Open

Nozomi Okuhara
Nozomi Okuhara

The current world number one and 2017 world champion Nozomi Okuhara bit the dust once again as she lost the 2019 Fuzhou China Open final to Chen Yufei of China. This was the seventh consecutive loss for Okuhara in finals. However, Chen Yufei of China gave a gift to the Chinese fans by winning her second consecutive title on home soil and overall fifth this year.

Rio Olympic bronze medallist Okuhara started well in the first game by completely outclassing her opponent. Initially, Okuhara took advantage of Chen's inability to neutralize her steady game and took the lead at the mid-game interval by 11-5 and managed to win the opening game comfortably by 21-9.

Surprisingly, Chen reversed the result in the second game with her strong attack and never-say-die spirit. She took the full advantage of Okuhara's errors and took the lead by 11-5 at the mid-break time. Okuhara failed to react the Chen's game and lost her focus and eventually lost the second game by 21-12.

Chen Yufei
Chen Yufei

The third game started with highest-quality badminton where Chen again took the lead by 11-5 after she took a medical time out earlier in the game. Nozomi tried to reduce the point difference but great fan support propelled Chen to seal the victory by 21-18 in the third and final game in an hour-and-22-minute long match.

This is the fifth title this year for Chen Yufei from her fifth final out of 14 individual tournaments. She is the most consistent player this year on the world tour as she reached at least the semifinal stage of 13 tournaments and lost once at the quarterfinal stage. Also, she played a crucial role in China's Sudirman cup victory this year. She is the biggest hope of China for the upcoming Olympic Games.

Contrastingly, Okuhara lost her sixth final of the year including the World Championship final. Also, this is her seventh consecutive final loss as she lost the HSBC world tour finals in December 2018 to P.V. Sindhu of India to whom she also lost the world championship final this year.

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Edited by S Chowdhury
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