Li upsets Wozniacki

Friday, 28 January 2011 01:32 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

 Li Na marked a small shift eastwards in the balance of power in the women’s game by becoming the first Chinese to reach a grand slam singles final.

The Chinese roared back from the brink of defeat to upset world number one Caroline Wozniacki 3-6 7-5 6-3 and set up a clash with Kim Clijsters who overpowered Russian Vera Zvonareva 6-3 6-3.

Li sprayed errors around the court for most of first two sets against Wozniacki and the top seed grabbed a match point at 5-4 in the second.

That brought the 28-year-old Chinese to life and she saved it before breaking back and, finding her range with her low, hard groundstrokes, evened up the contest on a Wozniacki double fault.

“After I saved the match point, I was thinking like, ‘Okay now a chance’,” said Li, who later blamed her sluggish start on her husband’s snoring.

The third set was a baseline battle punctuated with long rallies but the tide had now swung in Li’s favour and she sealed victory when Wozniacki misdirected a forehand after two-and-a-half hours.

“Many players, they play a long time, but they never get to the final of a grand slam,” Li said. “Today I got there...”

The 20-year-old Wozniacki, under pressure to justify her top ranking with a grand slam triumph, rued her missed match point.

“One ball could make a big difference,” she said. “I could have been sitting here as the winner. But could have, would have, if I would have done something different.”