MELBOURNE - Li Na is on fire to become the first Chinese player to win a Grand Slam final, as she kicked out world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 in Thursday's semifinal of Australia Open.
The Chinese woman spent two hours and 34 minutes to end Wozniacki's bid for Australian Open title.
Both players were tight in the opening games but after the nerves settled, Wozniacki played her game smoothly and won the first set 6-3 in 39 minutes.
In the beginning of second set, the world No.1's consistency impressed, with Li hit 32 unforced errors throughout the set to virtually gift the Danish lead on 4-2.
However, Li slowly got used to her opponent's pace, and managed to fight back and win the tight set 7-5 in 65 minutes.
The third set begins with all excitements, with the pair looks to have staged their best performance, not allowing each other to win each game.
Li then managed to score her only match point to end the game in two hours and 34 minutes.
"I am so happy, to become the first Chinese player to make it to a Grand Slam final," Li told reporters in Melbourne with a smile on her face. "I always be the first one."
She will next face the winner between Kim Clijsters and Vera Zvonareva.
Victorious Li Na
Post-match Interview scripts
I am always the number one...but I was nervous because I didn't get much sleep last night. My husband was snoring all night long...
My mom says she has her own life and she never travel with me to watch me play
Today is our wedding anniversary? I think it is two days later...either he or I may have got it wrong...
Well-deserved Li Na
It's just the feeling, how she is on court, her confidence and the way she's playing. I just feel she has a great chance to win the tournament.
- Andrea Petkovic of Germany, who lost to Li in the quarterfinals
Of all the story lines still available in the women's event, a Li victory...would seem to be by far the most irresistible...the manner of Li's victories this year in Sydney and now Melbourne has many looking ahead with anticipation.
- New York Times
Quotable Li Na
People ask me what I want to do after tennis. I actually want to be a housewife and look after my family well and let them grow up with nice memories.
Slam win wouldn't boost China's tennis
Maybe for one month. After one month, everyone forgets (about the title). Full Story
Husband's credit card pushed her
You can see now (after her quarterfinal victory) the credit card, he just left, you can't find him anymore. Full Story
A lesson from donation to Yushu
I feel they are much stronger than us. They will inspire me to do better on the court in the future so I can return them some more love. Full Story
Boosting Chinese Tennis
'Fly-away' works for Li and companies
In December 2008, the nation's top four women's players, Li Na, Zheng Jie, Peng Shuai and Yan Zi, became the first-ever Chinese athletes to be granted unprecedented freedom regarding having their own schedules, coaches and back-up teams. >>>