Connect to share and comment

Tennis: Li v Cibulkova penpix

Penpix for the Australian Open women's final on Saturday between Li Na and Dominika Cibulkova: LI NA (CHN) World ranking: 4 Birthdate: February 26, 1982 Birthplace: Wuhan, China Residence: Wuhan, China Height: 5ft 7 3/4in (1.72m) Weight: 143lbs (65kg) Plays: Right-handed Turned pro: 1999 Coach: Carlos Rodriguez Career singles titles: 8 Grand Slam singles titles: 1 Career prize money: $13,410,352 Best Australian Open result: Runner-up (2011, 2013)

Tennis: Li coy on China's state-run sports system

Li Na Thursday said it was hard to say whether China's state-run sports system had helped or hindered her career after she raced into the Australian Open final for a third time. The world number four, known for her humour and feisty personality, is a product of the state-supported sports machine in which promising athletes are spotted at an early age and enrolled in sports schools for training. The best of the best, including Li, are recruited by local or national teams, where they enjoy state-funded coaching, training and accommodation.

Tennis: Li makes most of 'second life' to make final

China's Li Na made the most of her "second life" at the Australian Open to brush aside Canadian teenager Eugenie Bouchard and sweep into another Grand Slam final Thursday. The fourth seed ended the 19-year-old's inspiring run at Melbourne Park 6-2, 6-4 and will play Slovak 20th seed Dominika Cibulkova in Saturday's decider. Li, 31, has consistently been a solid performer on Melbourne's plexicushion courts over the last five years, now reaching three finals, as well as another semi-final and the fourth round.

Tennis: Li makes most of 'second life' to make final

China's Li Na made the most of her "second life" at the Australian Open to brush aside Canadian teenager Eugenie Bouchard and sweep into another Grand Slam final Thursday. The fourth seed ended the 19-year-old's inspiring run at Melbourne Park 6-2, 6-4 and will play Slovak 20th seed Dominika Cibulkova in Saturday's decider. Li, 31, has consistently been a solid performer on Melbourne's plexicushion courts over the last five years, now reaching three finals, as well as another semi-final and the fourth round.

Tennis: Li ends Bouchard dream to make Aussie final

China's Li Na swept into her second consecutive Australian Open final on Thursday, using her all experience to brush aside Canadian teenager Eugenie Bouchard in straight sets. The fourth seed ended the 19-year-old's inspiring run at Melbourne Park 6-2, 6-4 and will play either fifth seed Agniezska Radwanska or 20th seed Dominika Cibulkova in Saturday's final. Li, 31, has consistently been a solid performer on Melbourne's plexicushion courts over the last five years, now reaching three finals, as well as another semi-final and the fourth round.

Tennis: Li v Bouchard penpics

Penpics for the Australian Open women's semi-final between Li Na and Eugenie Bouchard on Thursday: LI NA (CHN) World ranking: 4 Birthdate: February 26, 1982 Birthplace: Wuhan, China Residence: Wuhan, China Height: 5ft 7 3/4in (1.72m) Weight: 143lbs (65kg) Plays: Right-handed Turned pro: 1999 Coach: Carlos Rodriguez Career singles titles: 8 Grand Slam singles titles: 1 Career prize money: $13,410,352 Best Australian Open result: Runner-up (2011, 2013)

Tough words from coach helped me into semis: Li

(Reuters) - China's Li Na allowed herself a small smile of satisfaction after she advanced to her fourth Australian Open semi-final on Tuesday, mindful that an inquisition from coach Carlos Rodriguez earlier in the tournament had helped her get there. The 31-year-old, who has reached two of the last three finals at Melbourne Park, blasted the 28th-seeded Flavia Pennetta off the court with a 6-2 6-2 win on Tuesday with a strong first serve and barrage of powerful ground strokes.

Tennis: Hard work pays off as Li reaches Aussie semis

Intense preparation paid off for world number four Li Na Tuesday as she swept aside Italian Flavia Pennetta in a straight-sets demolition to move into the Australian Open semi-finals. The Chinese trailblazer was in dominant form as she crushed the 28th seed 6-2, 6-2 to set up a last-four clash with either Serbia's Ana Ivanovic or up-and-coming Canadian teen Eugenie Bouchard. Li is starting to peak at the right time, with the 67-minute mauling of Pennetta coming after she smashed Ekaterina Makarova in less than an hour on Sunday.

Tennis: China's Li races into Open quarter-finals

Chinese star Li Na raced past Russia's Ekaterina Makarova in less than an hour to reach the Australian Open quarter-finals at a canter on Sunday. The two-time Melbourne finalist and 2011 French Open winner was rarely extended in the 6-2, 6-0 win in 59 minutes in warm conditions on Hisense Arena. The world number four is now just two wins from her third Melbourne final, and three victories from ending her jinx at the season's opening Grand Slam.

Tennis: Five-centimetre miss saves Li from disaster

Five centimetres proved the difference between Li Na taking an early flight home and staying at the Australian Open Friday after the Chinese star narrowly survived a match point against Lucie Safarova. The gritty fourth seed, a finalist last year, was forced to rally from a set down and through a tiebreak to win 1-6, 7-6 (7/2), 6-3 in a two-and-a-half hour marathon on another hot Melbourne day. It ensured she avoided her earliest exit at the tournament since 2008 to set up a clash with Russian 22nd seed Ekaterina Makarova for a place in the quarter-finals.
Syndicate content