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Mar 28th, 2006, 02:33 PM
Let's share news, articles, and interviews about Li Na
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Apr 15th, 2006, 11:36 AM
Na at Pacific Life Open
By: Philip Graves
Date: March 20, 2006, 3:53pm

She made a sound start with a comfortable 6-1 6-3 win over former Top-40 star Anne Kremer of Luxembourg

Then defeated Czech World No. 39 Iveta Benesova by the surprisingly one-sided scoreline of 6-1 6-0 in Round Two, and appeared to be coasting to a fairly comfortable victory at 6-2 5-1 up against Vania King in Round Three before the spirited American wildcard won three successive games, forcing Li Na to close out the closely-tied second set 6-4, having lost her own serve twice during the set. In the fourth round, she played Russian superstar and World No. 8 Elena Dementieva for the first time; and though the first set was fairly evenly contested, Li Na struggled to hold her own service throughout the match, being broken five times while breaking Dementieva's serve just twice, and was ultimately defeated 6-3 6-2, although overall she won 50 points against the Russian's 63. Still, she earned 45 ranking points from the tournament; and with none to defend from the previous March, this should assure her of a rise of about ten places back into the World's Top 60, with the possibility of further inroads to be made at Miami next week if the draw allows it.


Apr 15th, 2006, 11:46 AM
Na Li Comes Up Short
By: Jamie RS
Date: March 27, 2006, 2:47am

She gave it a valliant effort! Na Li played against the red hot Maria Sharapova under the lights at the Nasdaq-100 Open tonight, and came up just short in the second set. After dropping the first set 6-2, she lead 4-1 in the second, before dropping the next five games and the match.

None the less it was a good result from Na. She's playing really well against some of the top players this year, she is just coming up a bit short in the clutch. Hopefully she can bring up mental game for the rest of the year, and really start stepping up her game against the top players.

Na Li did not enter doubles, so her tournament in Miami is done. I don't expect Na to play again until their Fed Cup Tie against Indonesia. It is rumored that Na and Shuai Peng will play singles and Jie Zheng and Zi Yan will play doubles. I wish Na the best of luck in that match, and hopefully she'll get her game going for the clay season.

Apr 15th, 2006, 11:49 AM
Li Na at Miami
By: Philip Graves
Date: March 30, 2006, 2:05am

'Sharapova Showdown: the Sequel' might be an appropriate headline summarising Li Na's experience of the Nasdaq-100 Open at Miami 2006.

The resurgent Chinese No. 1, back up to World No. 60 having again proven her capability of great results against higher-ranked players in her solid recent performances at Doha and Indian Wells, was faced at the outset of the draw with the unwelcome prospect of a repeat meeting with Maria Sharapova in Round Two.

And so (as fellow Li Na team-blogger Jamie rightly pointed out in his tournament preview: I would have put it similarly myself), after a brief respite, Miami marked a return to the bad luck with draws that has plagued Li Na since the start of 2006.

At least her comfortable first round draw against Akiko Morigami (6-1 6-2 to Li Na) did allow her to notch up another nineteen ranking points, with none to defend from the previous March when she was injured. So the seemingly inevitable second-round loss to the Russian No. 1 was not a disaster so much as a setback for her. But still it was a disappointment to all those in the Li Na camp and wider fanbase who must have realised that, had the draw been more open, she would have had an excellent shot at another fourth round finish, as her more fortunate compatriot Zheng Jie proved in reaching the quarter-finals.

Yet every harsh draw brings with it a positive face in the form of the experience that comes from another head-to-head encounter with one of the world's most successful players on the tour. Li Na has lost in each of her last three successive tournaments to Top-10 stars, all of them (coincidentally) Russians. She was playing against Elena Dementieva for the first time at Indian Wells, and very much finding her way; yet at Doha she played Nadia Petrova for the third time and greatly improved on her previous results against her despite ultimately losing the match, while here at Miami she played Sharapova for the second time, and managed to win three times the number of games that she achieved in their previous encounter, despite panning out as the match loser by a decisive-seeming margin of 2-6 4-6.

The improvement registered by Li Na in this tournament over her thrashing by the current Russian No. 1 at last year's Australian Open is not to be dismissed out-of-hand. Every time she faces the top players, Li Na will gain valuable experience and added confidence for the next occasion. Eventually, in some cases at least, this will be enough to tip the balance in her favour, as she proved in her recent routing of Daniela Hantuchova at Doha.

Among the most important qualities for Li Na to retain as she persists through these trying draws are the will to persevere, and the confidence and self-belief to know that, at her most focussed and alert, she is a match for any of the top players on the tour.

She has been performing wonderfully well, and her talent is all there. But to make the breakthrough that we all know she is theoretically capable of making into the World's Top 30 at the least, and very possibly the ultra-competitive Top 20, she also needs consistency, cultivated inner emotional stability on court, and courage tempered by a degree of moderation when it comes to exercising her riskier strokes. Her winners are fantastic, and her play is a joy to watch, but the top players may often beat her just by making slightly fewer errors thanks to lower risk-taking, and by subtly intimidating her with their reputations and will to prevail. Improvements in these areas may be valuable keys to the long-awaited breakthrough.

All comments welcome!

Apr 25th, 2006, 05:42 PM

China looks to World Group

China’s gradual emergence in world tennis, in particular women’s tennis, has been a long march. With each step this huge nation has been gaining more and more attention. Since tennis became a full medal sport in the Olympic Games it has been given a prominent place among all sports in China.

But while tennis by its nature is an individual sport, and there is plenty of recognition for individual success, it is the team events that garner the greater bulk of attention. For the professional tennis players of China, winning tournaments and Grand Slams is fantastic but it’s their success in the team competitions by which they and others measure themselves.

The Olympics, Asian Games, China Games and Fed Cup by BNP Paribas are the four most important events for the Chinese tennis players. So the fact that the team has won through to the World Group I Play-offs carries a lot of significance.

In China, Fed Cup is king

“In China, Fed Cup is king, it is like the Asian Games and Olympics,” said Na Li, who scored the point that gave China its unassailable lead over Indonesia in Jakarta in the first round of World Group II.

“It is so exciting because for China it is the first time in the World Group. I have played here in Indonesia and I won two points and it is so exciting for us.

“Playing for my country is more important for China players than playing for yourself. If I play a WTA tournament and lose, I think ‘okay I play bad, but there is the next tournament’, but if I play Fed Cup and lose this point I think I have done wrong.

“Now in China, tennis is much better than before. In 2004 we won the Olympic Games and this year we won the Australian Open doubles, so I think it is getting better in China and Fed Cup is very, very important.”


May 5th, 2006, 06:04 AM
Li Stuns Schnyder in Berlin

May 13, 1:36 AM, Saturday, BERLIN (AFP) - Li Na scored one of the finest wins ever by a Chinese tennis player when she saved three match points to bring down world number nine Patty Schnyder of Switzerland in the German Open quarter-finals.

Li's sensational 2-6, 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/1) win was achieved from love-forty down at 5-6 in the second set and from 2-5 down in the final set, carrying her to the first Tier One tournament semi-final of her career.

It was a long tough, battle and all the more surprising for following a tournament, the Estoril Open, in which she had to retire in the final.

Li had no stamina problems on this occasion, and also found that her double-handed backhand was well suited to containing and counter-attacking against her left-handed opponent's cross-court forehand.

She also concentrated well and never allowed herself to get down when she had long leads to make up. She was equally resilient to recover from treatment to a big toe when a nail came off.

Asked how she had achieved such an upset, the 24-year-old from Wuhan in Hubai province, said: "I don't know."

But after agreeing that it was the best win of her career against an opponent who had won both of their previous two meetings, she said: "This time I had a good philosophy - more positive and more calm."

Her cramps in Estoril had partly been caused because she had been nervous, she said, but this time she was nervous only for the first three games.

On the three match points she had no nerves, adding that "I didn't think about anything on those points. I just concentrated on my serve."

Despite this, her success owed something to Schnyder's apparently casual attitude and increasingly mistake-prone game.

Schnyder was hardly in contention in a tie-break which she lost 7-2, and then appeared to move freely to a long final set lead, discomforting Li with mixtures of loopy high bouncing balls and harder hits.

But when she went off the boil, she never blew hot again, while Li became more focussed in her cocoon of concentration. Schnyder collapsed completely in the final tie-break, losing it 7-1, serving a double fault to go match point down and immedialtely losing it when she put a limp return of serve wide.

Jun 23rd, 2006, 03:54 PM
http://www.sonyericssonwtatour.com/newsroom/?ContentID=536 :cool:

June 21, 2006

Li Na Notches Chinese Ranking Milestone

It was only a matter of time before China, one of the world's most booming tennis nations, would have one of its players crack the Top 30 on the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour Singles Rankings. After some stellar results during the clay court season and a run to the third round at Birmingham, Li Na became the latest to raise the bar for her home country, reaching No.30 on this week's rankings.

Between May and August of 2005, Li held the national record for highest singles ranking, having risen to No.35 on May 2 (passing the previous high of No.36 set by Li Fang in 1998) and then to No.33 on May 9. But she was passed late in the summer hardcourt season by compatriot Peng Shuai (who reached No.31), and in early spring of this season, Li bottomed out at No.71.

But after a spectacular last few months that has seen her reach her third career final (at Estoril), her first career Tier I semifinal (at Berlin) and notch her career-first Top 20 victories (over world No.15 Daniela Hantuchova at Doha and No.9 Patty Schnyder at Berlin), she has seen her ranking skyrocket back up to No.30.

"Last year I had my highest ranking at No.33, but I had an ankle injury that kept me out for two months," stated the 24-year-old. "If it weren't for my injury then, I may have been in the Top 30 earlier, but it's better late than never."

This isn't the first Chinese milestone Li has been responsible for. In October of 2004, she became the first Tour singles titlist from her country, qualifying for and then capturing the new Tier III event in Guangzhou.

There have been numerous breakthroughs for China over the last few years. At the Athens Olympics in 2004, Li Ting and Sun Tiantian became the first ever Chinese tennis medalists, winning gold in women's doubles. Last summer, Peng became the first Chinese woman to reach the semifinals at a Tier I event (at San Diego). At the Australian Open earlier this year, Zheng Jie and Yan Zi brought home China's first Grand Slam title in women's doubles...

"It's really great because now the Chinese girls are getting much better," added Li, one of six Chinese women in the singles Top 100, also one of six in the doubles Top 100. "It definitely helps make tennis more popular in China and hopefully more people will follow us."

Jul 1st, 2006, 03:54 AM

Li Sends Kuznetsova Crashing Out :cool:

©Reuters / A. Pierdomenico

Friday, 30 June, 2006

Rising Chinese star Na Li pulled off a shock in the ladies' singles when she ousted fifth seed and former US Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova in a three-set battle.

Li, the highest ranked of the three Chinese women who have made Wimbledon history by reaching the third round stage this year, came from a set down to win 3-6, 6-2, 6-3.

After the first set went the Russian's way -thanks largely to her superior power - Li virtually halved her unforced errors and began to time her shots much better than her opponent.

Suddenly, it was Kuznetsova who was struggling to get to Li’s testing cross court ground strokes and the Chinese woman, who is actually four years older than her opponent despite her lesser experience, maintained a simple yet highly effective game plan to outfox the Russian, hitting the corners of the court and serving solidly to level the match.

The longer the match went on, Kuznetsova's serving became more reckless and her ground strokes more impatient, as Li increasingly moved her opponent around the court, disrupting her balance.

Occasionally Li would mix things up by pressurising the Russian's backhand, cleverly sending the ball deep into the worn patches of turf emerging along the baseline and forcing more and more errors from the 20-year-old. With her solid serve supporting a smart baseline strategy she continued to dominate the match and went ahead again early in the third.

Kuznetsova showed signs of a late comeback but her body language in between points and her sluggish movement during play suggested that she did not have the mental strength to fight back.

At 4-3, Li took Kuznetsova’s service game with ease and served out for the match to seal a famous victory for her and for Chinese tennis. :devil:

Written by Michael Burke-Velji

Jul 1st, 2006, 05:02 AM

Li Na sinks fifth seed Kuznetsova
Friday, June 30, 2006; Posted: 2:11 p.m. EDT (18:11 GMT)

LONDON, England -- Li Na has become the first Chinese player in Wimbledon history to reach the singles fourth round when she upset Russian fifth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova 3-6 6-2 6-3.

The 24-year-old produced a superb recovery against the French Open runner-up after losing the first set, smashing forehand winners at will on Court Three.

Kuznetsova's defeat, confirmed when the 2004 U.S. Open champion netted a backhand service return on Li's first match point, made her the highest seed to exit the women's singles so far.

"When I was in the locker room afterwards I still couldn't quite believe it," said Li, who was beaten by Kuznetsova in the third round at Roland Garros this year.

"Even in the two matches that I lost to her I played well but today I think after losing the first set I managed to come up with a different strategy."

Li was one of a record three Chinese women to have reached the Wimbledon third round this year.

No Chinese player has been beyond the fourth round of a grand slam singles event. Zheng Jie reached the French Open fourth round in 2004.

Meanwhile, French Open champion Justine Henin-Hardenne sailed into the fourth round but said that achieving a grand slam double within a month, was one of the toughest challenges in tennis.

Wimbledon is the only jewel missing in Henin-Hardenne's grand slam crown and in a wide open field, this could be her year.

She has dropped just nine games so far in her almost effortless progress through the draw and on Friday she crisply despatched Russian teenager Anna Chakvetadze 6-2 6-3.

In the first set, a ball girl fainted in the baking midday sun. Chakvetadze wilted too, losing her serve twice.

Henin-Hardenne dropped her serve once in the second set but rarely looked challenged and ended the contest with a sharp backhand volley.

Wimbledon conjures mixed emotions for the Belgian number three seed. In 2001, the grass tournament was her first grand slam final. Last year she got knocked out in the first round.

The difference this year is that she played and won the Eastbourne warm-up tournament on grass -- and it shows.

"It's tough to come from clay to grass in just a week and I was very happy I could play in Eastbourne," she said.

"Physically and mentally, two grand slams in a month, it's difficult," she said. "It's tough to live this kind of pressure again two weeks later."

Mountain to climb
But she still has a mountain to climb as all the top seeds at Wimbledon have had an easy passage through the early rounds.

"It means that all the top players have a lot of motivation and keep their energy in the first week," she said.

Henin-Hardenne, winner of five grand slams in Australia, France and the U.S., adores the tradition surrounding Wimbledon. "I love to come here... It's been my first grand slam final ever so that means a lot of things for me here."

Martina Hingis's Wimbledon comeback stalled in the third round on Friday when she was outclassed by Japan's Ai Sugiyama 7-5 3-6 6-4.

The 1997 champion and 12th seed, playing at the grasscourt grand slam for the first time since 2001, had lost just seven games coming into the match.

Sugiyama proved to be a more stubborn opponent, taking the first set and storming back from 3-0 down in the decider to clinch victory when Hingis put a backhand wide.

She will next meet French qualifier Severine Bremond for a place in the quarterfinals.

Jul 1st, 2006, 05:12 AM

Sports/Olympics / Tennis
Updated: 2006-07-01 11:13

Li Na makes Wimbledon history for China

Li Na has admitted to being stunned after upsetting Russian fifth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova to become the first Chinese player to reach the last 16 at Wimbledon.

Li, the 27th seed, will now face Nicole Vaidisova of the Czech Republic on Monday for a place in the quarter-finals.

China's Li Na plays a shot to Russia's Svetlana Kuznetsova during their match at the Wimbledon tennis championships in London June 30, 2006. [Reuters]

"When I was in the locker room afterwards I couldn't believe it," said the 24-year-old from Wuhan.

Li believes her decision to return to college in 2003 before resuming her tennis career has been one of the major reasons for her success.

"Definitely that helped, before I was just a little girl and when something happened on court I couldn't really think properly," she added.

"I think now I've grown up."

Zheng Jie, China's world number 37, said she was delighted by her compatriot Li's achievement.

Zheng, who was beaten in straight sets by Belgian second seed Kim Clijsters in the third round, said she was not surprised by Li's 2-6, 6-2, 6-3 victory over Kuznetsova.

"I was not surprised that she beat her this time," said the 23-year-old.

"Two years ago she played her in the China Open and had two match points but she lost.

"She said yesterday morning that when she always plays Kuznetsova she always loses in three sets but I told her she could win next time!"

Zheng said she was pleased with her own performance in reaching the third round at only her second Wimbledon and was full of praise for Clijsters.

"She has a lot of power and a big serve," said Zheng. "I returned well today but her serve is so strong that I didn't have the chance.

"I think it isn't bad to get to the third round as in China there are no grass courts."

Clijsters paid tribute to the Chinese girl.

"She's a tough player. I played against her once in Hong Kong in an exhibition. It was a close match," said the Belgian.

"She's a counter-puncher. She likes to play fast rallies and likes to stand on the baseline and dictate the points.

"It was important for me to keep moving her side to side and not let her play her game."

China began the tournament with six women in the first round draw.

On Saturday, Peng Shuai faces Italy's Flavia Pennetta, the 16th seed, for a place in the last 16.

"Peng will play Pennetta," said Zheng. "She has a big chance as Pennetta likes clay courts."

Li, who clinched her first tour title at Guangzhou in 2004, is making her debut at Wimbledon and is the first Chinese player to be seeded at a Grand Slam.

Her passage to the fourth round also equals the best Grand Slam performance by a Chinese competitor after Zheng's run to the last 16 at the French Open in 2004.

Jul 6th, 2006, 05:26 AM

N. Vaidisova Interview - Day 7
Monday, 3 July, 2006

Q. Can you just talk about what was going wrong out there.

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Uhm, you know, I think I struggled with my rhythm from the start. I felt I didn't move very well today, you know, felt a little tired, a little tight. But, you know, I have to give credit to her. On some points, on the important points, she, you know, played some great points, hit some great shots. You know, just what everybody saw.

Q. How much of this match was decided by your physical form?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: A little bit, but, you know, I definitely felt I struggled my movement today. Yesterday was I think a big part of it.

Q. Would it be fair to say you were coming to Wimbledon feeling maybe not a hundred percent fresh?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: No, I felt a hundred percent fresh coming in here.

Q. You withdrew from Eastbourne due to fatigue. You felt probably drained after the French Open?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Yes, but not here. It's not my excuse. I felt a hundred percent ready to play here.

Q. Was there a specific injury today, or can you explain the feeling of tightness and tiredness?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: No, no. In general, I just felt tired on the court, slow and everything. But it was not because of the injury or anything. It was just, you know, those are days when you just wake up and you feel tired and you have to overcome. And, unfortunately, I really didn't do that that well today.

Q. In a match like that when things sort of you get a feeling that things are starting to go wrong, was that almost before the match or during the first set?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: No, early, you know, it was I think the whole time just felt, you know, not great on court, you know. Usually I will relax in the first set, hit better. But just it didn't happen. In general I didn't feel well on the court today.

Q. How would you sum up your experience at Wimbledon this year?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Better than last year. You know, first time also in the second week of Wimbledon, you know. I am definitely a little disappointed right now, but, you know, I think I still have a long career in front of me and still do so much better. Now I'll just take this experience and use it for my next tournament.

Q. Because of what happened in Paris and because of the attention around you, do you think people sometimes forget that you're still very young and you're still reasonably inexperienced at these kind of tournaments?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Of course people, you know, after French started expecting me to do so well again or better. And just my first, second, third round match, it was just assumed that I will win. It's definitely getting a little harder to do. But, you know, it's part of tennis, and I'll have to accept that.

Q. You are still 17 and playing professional tour. Do you feel yourself as a teenager or as a mature person? Do you have to watch your schedule and listen to your body? Is it still growing?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Yeah, I think health is definitely my number one priority. I don't play a crazy amount of tournaments. I definitely, you know, focus a lot on my scheduling, the way it's done and everything, because, you know, right now health is my priority because I still want to play, you know, years and years ahead. So to manage that, you have to have a right schedule.

Q. A lot of us are going back and forth from matches, we can't see all the matches as they're played. How much did you come to net the first couple sets? Did you come in much?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: No, not quite much.

Q. Do you think that's a way for you to do better here in years to come perhaps?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: I'm sure I'll never be a, you know, volley kind of player coming in and stuff. That's just not the way I play. Of course I could maybe do a little more, maybe it would help me a little more. I probably should work on that a little bit, but I don't think it's going to change my game, you know, a lot.

Q. Is it special to play against Chinese player?


Q. Special to play against Chinese player?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: In what kind of way?

Q. Well, I don't know. Maybe they have a certain way to play. I don't know.

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: You know, they all play a similar game, you know. They are very, you know, fighting till the end all the time. They play, you know, very hard, try to hit the ball hard now. So there's, you know, couple good Chinese player coming up.

Q. You played several times against Chinese player this season and you won all the matches. This is your first loss, right, against Chinese player?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: How about that.

Q. Were you surprised by how she served, some of those down the stretch?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Yeah, I think in general she played very well today. On some points, key points, breakpoints, stuff like that, she definitely managed to play very well. I definitely know I could have played better. But anything but, you know, it's due to also the way she played today.

Q. Can you just talk specifically about her and what she did very well and how she was difficult to play.

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Oh, definitely she served very well. She moved better than I did, you know. She hits the ball very hard and, you know, most of the point, you know, the balls were falling in or hitting the lines and stuff. So, you know, tough to play that.

Q. Did the heat affect you today?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: No, I'm used to the heat, you know. I live in Florida, you know. It's really hot. You know, I don't think heat ever affects me that much.

Q. Can I ask you what age you reached your current height?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Uhm, some time last year, end of last year probably.

Q. You stopped growing up?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: I think so, yeah. I think I'm done.

Q. Your pro career, before 15, there are many girls who do that, quite a few of them. What did you find as your biggest challenge turning from Juniors?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: Just in the Juniors everything is so laid back, you know. Everybody's friends, everybody hangs out together and everything. It's just more fun. Now it's everybody, you know, focus, is very focused. It's much harder to just, you know, travel so much. You travel much more. You're by yourself a lot, you know, maybe with your coach or any but that was definitely a tough part for me.

Q. Did you get any advice from Martina Hingis? Did she invite you to train with her?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: No. I know her. She's a very nice girl, you know, from Czech. She's very nice.

Q. Would you be at the same time in Bollettieri together with Maria and Tatiana? Would it be accurate to say you were training together?


Q. You were separate?


Q. Of all the Slams, looking sort of long term, which one do you think fits your game the best?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: I like the US Open the best, you know. I'm a hard court I think I like hard courts the best. But also I think I can, you know I proved I can do great and good on any surface, you know. Clay has not been my number one my priority, but I've done well there. I definitely would love, you know, the US Open.

Q. Why do you think of all of them, you got to the French semis first? Why did that work out the best for you?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: I felt good with my rhythm. Everything was good. I practiced very hard the last couple months before. And, you know, definitely knew I was playing better and better, and, you know, I think I can keep going.

Q. How much Daniel was involved in your development, your uncle? Did he help?

NICOLE VAIDISOVA: He's my uncle, but that's about it.

Jul 6th, 2006, 05:31 AM
N. Li Interview - Day 7
Monday, 3 July, 2006

Q. Why did you think you won today, and why the sudden turnaround?

NA LI: There was no solution for any match before the match finished.

Q. Obviously, you've made history for China. Can you talk about how it feels.

NA LI: I'm proud of myself and I'm very proud for my country, as well. Especially for this is the first time I'm in this match and go that further. I'm very proud for that. Although, the first set I lost, but anyway, I'm proud of what I've got.

Q. What does this mean for Chinese tennis back home?

NA LI: It represents the women's tennis in China will getting better and better.

Q. Several Chinese players have trained with Alan Ma. Are you one of those players?

NA LI: (In English.) Never.

Q. Do we have it straightened out what her first name is?

NA LI: (In English.) Na.

Q. Why did you win today? What was the reason that you won today?

NA LI: There is no reason for winning a match.

Q. Was it because of your serve or because she fell apart, that you were concentrating better? There are reasons why you beat somebody.

NA LI: I don't know how to answer your question.

Q. Where do you train now? Do you train with other players?

NA LI: I'm belonging to the national team. Normally we will train together as a national team. If out of match, if we're not in match, we'll be training in Beijing or Guangzhou.

Q. If you had to say, when do you think a Chinese player will first win a Grand Slam?

NA LI: I don't know, but I think it takes time gradually step by step.

Q. What are your first memories of Wimbledon? How does your reality compare with what you expected?

NA LI: The first impression of Wimbledon gave to me was from the video I was watching for tennis players, playing the video. It was so distant to me at that time. It was so far away from me. The senior players, Chinese players, their best step was going to the third round. When I was in the ranking of 30 something, I thought it was not possible for me to have reached that far.

Q. What kind of influence do the Olympic Games in 2008 have on the rise of Chinese tennis players?

NA LI: I personally think this is a totally different match with Olympic Games.

Q. Even though he's American, has Michael Chang had any impact on your life as a tennis player?

NA LI: As a Chinese player, Michael Chang I think has influenced every single Chinese Asian people, especially he play that very, very well.

Q. Do you feel like you are a pioneer, that you are opening a new chapter in tennis history?

NA LI: I'm all right because before me, there are two doubles players, two pairs of doubles players, that got to a similar result.

Q. What aspect of your game are you happiest with, and what aspect do you feel needs the most improvement before the quarterfinals?

NA LI: The most satisfactory aspect for me is where I am now because it's out of my expectation I can go that far. For the rest of your question, I don't know.

Q. Which aspect are you happy with? Are you happy with your serve at the moment, or do you feel that needs improvement?

NA LI: I think my serve is better.

Q. Are you aware of how this is playing out in the newspapers and media back home? Would you have been more famous if you had stuck with badminton?

NA LI: Probably I would be a champion, a world champion, if I played badminton.

Q. About how it plays out in the papers back home?

NA LI: It's all those people from the Chinese media (pointing to the audience).

Q. A question about the Chinese men, why they're not doing as well as the women. I'm sure you've been asked that before, but just to let us know, if you wouldn't mind.

NA LI: I think more man in the world are playing tennis than woman in population. That's why I think they are in more strong competitions, situation, than woman. Plus our government will invest more capital investment on woman's playing.

Q. Why is that?

NA LI: Because woman has won the title of Olympic tennis and another title, very significant title.

Q. Have you ever met Michael Chang or had the opportunity to meet Michael Chang or do you have friends that have met him?

NA LI: No, none of them.

Q. Have you spoken to members of your family at home to get some idea of the reaction in China to your success?

NA LI: I haven't had contact with my family yet. But lots of my friends back in China have sent me the text messages to congratulate me.

Q. What do you like the most about London and what do you miss the most about China?

NA LI: I haven't seen London yet because I just come simply playing the game. But I've heard from friends that London is great. Regarding about China, the most thing I miss is my family.

Q. Do you ever dream of holding the Wimbledon trophy on the last day and winning this tournament?

NA LI: I've had this kind of dream, but I have to drop it because the more you expect, probably in return you have more disappointment. I have to back to the reality.

Q. Are you surprised there are no Americans in the quarterfinals, and we have the first Chinese? Any thoughts on that that you might have?

NA LI: I haven't thought that much. I'm just quite pleased at the stage where I am now.

Jul 6th, 2006, 05:34 AM
Li Secures Historic Win


Monday, 3 July, 2006

Using her powerful serve to devastating effect, 27th seed Na Li made tennis history by becoming the first Chinese player to reach the quarter-finals at Wimbledon, overcoming 10th seed Nicole Vaidisova in three tense sets.

Much of the match – played under intense heat on Court No. 3 – was made up of long baseline rallies, but the Chinese 24-year-old ultimately proved the more convincing of the two, coming from a set down to win 4-6, 6-1, 6-3.

It was 17-year-old Vaidisova, a semi-finalist at Roland Garros earlier this month, who set the early pace though, making five aces in the first 30 minutes of the match, with Li initially struggling to cope with the pace and accuracy of Vaidisova’s potent serves.

In a dramatic eighth game of the first set, Vaidisova survived two break points to hold serve, as Li – the first Chinese player ever to be seeded at Wimbledon – struggled to make an impact early on. Vaidisova, who also reached the fourth round at the Australian Open in January, comfortably served out the set.

Opening the second set on serve, Li looked increasingly confident, and although she missed a straightforward smash, the Chinese right-hander battled hard, quickly breaking the Vaidisova serve. Soon Li was two breaks up at 4-0. Now in firm control, Li comfortably served out the remainder of the set with a cool mixture of searing groundstrokes and well directed serves.

In the third set, Li – who defeated fifth seed and former US Open champion Svetlana Kuznetsova in a gruelling three set match in the previous round – visibly improved with every game, frequently finding the ability to counter Vaidisova’s serve effectively.

Although the Czech teenager remained defiant, Li was too strong for her, breaking late in the set to steal a famous victory. She faces No.2 seed Kim Clijsters in the quarter-finals.

Written by Andrew Gregory

Jul 6th, 2006, 05:39 AM

Na Li Interview - Day 8
Tuesday, 4 July, 2006

Q. How was the impression of the Centre Court of Wimbledon?

NA LI: I haven't been paying a great attention to that at all because I just went there and play the game.

Q. You were not a little bit impressed about the crowd and the atmosphere and stuff like that?

NA LI: Because I think if I put hundred percent concentration on playing probably I wouldn't have paid attention to that.

Q. You don't appear to get nervous on big points. You play very strong mentally. This whole experience has to be fairly new for you. Can you comment on how you're able to keep your focus and how you fight against nerves.

NA LI: Actually, I was very nervous. I think for those kind of level of match, for games, it will be for everyone will be very nervous. But no matter how nervous you are, you just have to focus on what you are doing.

Q. Did you expect to do this well, to get to the quarters?

NA LI: It's kind of expectation for a long time. But this time I kind of had played my level. Eventually I have got what my expectation to be done.

Q. Was it your dream to play on Centre Court when you were training as a youngster to come into tennis?

NA LI: I think for every tennis player, this is a dream. It's a common dream for everyone.

Q. Which aspects of your game do you think you have to improve to reach that level to be on the top like Kim Clijsters or Justine Henin Hardenne?

NA LI: I have to consult this aspect with my coach.

Q. Coming from a culture that's so different than this one, do you think that was an advantage or disadvantage to you? Did it help you here at the tournament, or did it work against you?

NA LI: I think it fine for me because we played almost every week to different locations around the world, so I think this is not major problem for me.

Q. There's been a lot of talk about equality in prize money, men and women. What is your take on that?

NA LI: As for me, I'm satisfied because I'm a female. I'm happy with the more money invest on me. I don't really mind what's going on for the male side.

Q. Where are you going to answer by yourself without a translator?

NA LI: It's not really good idea.

Q. A lot of people have been talking about the rise of female Chinese players. We've seen lots of young Russian players here take over in recent years. How many Chinese players do you think will perhaps be in the finals here in a year's time or in five years' time or even in ten years' time?

NA LI: It cannot be decide by me.

Q. Do you think that perhaps the Chinese can have as great an impact one day as the Russians have had?

NA LI: I think, yes, should be.

Q. You will travel whole year as a professional tennis player. What kind of difficulties you found in the tour, for example, language or food? You go to Chinese restaurant?

NA LI: I feel fine for those two aspects you mentioned. Like food, most of us, we can almost adjust ourself to eat our food.

And for the language, most of the foreigners, they know that as a Chinese, we don't speak their language. Most of them will be very understandable to use kind of body language to get us to we understand.

Q. Will you get a special bonus for getting to the Wimbledon quarterfinals?

NA LI: No. (In English) If you pay me, yes. If you can give me something, I can get (smiling).

THE MODERATOR: And you got your answer in English, too.

Q. Do you have any family who have come over to see you this week? Have they come over to see you or have you been in touch with them?

NA LI: It's quite rare for Chinese players to have family to be with them, you know, in a match.

Q. (Through translation) The journalists have been talking about your playing style, its beginning slowly. Like yesterday's match, you started slowly but caught up by the second set. You are a player that gets into the situation a bit slower than other players.

THE INTERPRETER: Her answer was she doesn't really thinks exactly agree with the media. She thinks she's moderate player.

Q. (Through translation.) You've been playing with those very high ranking players, especially the first ten players. Were you very nervous because you got a double fault in your service at the beginning of the match. Does that mean you were very, very nervous?

THE INTERPRETER: She said no, double fault means nervous. But what if I serve an ace, does that mean I was not nervous?

Her answer was she doesn't think she was nervous. But only she was nervous when before she was led to the playing ground.

Q. Which tennis player do you most admire, past or present?

NA LI: Agassi. Andre Agassi.

Q. Can you elaborate on why?

NA LI: I think so far he is the best player of that baseline player. Because she is a baseline player as well, that's why she think Andre Agassi is a good player, admire play.

Q. Will you play Fed Cup next week? If so, what is your expectation? What is your comment on the Fed Cup held in Beijing next week?

NA LI: Because I expect to win. Of course I expect I can win in that event because this is the first time for China, for Chinese national team, to be go that further. Plus, I have participate in this game, of course my expectation will be to winning.

However, Germany is not so big team, so we still have a lot of thing to do, a lot of work to do. There is some of player in the Germany team is before the 10th of the world ranking. But, however, in all, I can't just say anything before the match starts because nobody knows what will happening after match starts.

Q. You mentioned Andre Agassi. What about the women's tour, is there a player that can serve as a reference for you?

NA LI: (In English) Lindsay, Lindsay Davenport.

Q. (Through translation.) How many times have you been play with Clijsters before?

NA LI: This is the second time I'm playing with her.

Q. (Through translation.) During your second set when you played with Miss Clijsters, you were Love 2, 40 behind. At your second service, your service was on the line. But the side referee just called the ball out. At that point, Clijsters, she was very honest and she thought the ball was on line. What do you think about the personality of Miss Clijsters from that?

NA LI: Actually, I was talking with her already in the changing room. You know, as women, we always love to talk about things.

Q. Gossip.

NA LI: Gossip, chatting, gossip, that kind of thing, yes.

Q. (Through translation.) So are you now a friend with Miss Clijsters?

NA LI: Not really because she's in a more higher level than us. We have different changing room, and normally higher players will not get along with us.

Q. You seem very self controlled and cool on a tennis court. Do you ever use bad language or throw a racquet or make a commotion?

NA LI: Regarding about the bad language, I probably will only curse myself, using the bad language. I did try to slap the matt, but I didn't try any more because if it's broken, I have to change another one to play. So I stop doing that.

Q. (Through translation.) Overall, your performance today was very well, you played very well. Did you expect to go further before the match started?

THE INTERPRETER: She said, Why you put me this very tough question?

Q. That's the answer?

NA LI: Of course I expect to win because this is a common expectation for every players.

Jul 6th, 2006, 06:23 AM
Li savors Centre Court experience


LONDON (Reuters) -- Chinese No. 1 Li Na said Tuesday's Wimbledon quarte-final against Kim Clijsters on Centre Court had been a dream come true.

"I was very nervous. I think for these level of matches everyone would be nervous," the 24-year-old told reporters through a translator after her defeat.

"For every young player it's a dream come true to play on Centre Court."

Despite her nerves, Li produced a performance of power and skill to push world No. 2 Clijsters before losing 6-4 7-5.

"It's kind of been an expectation for a long time. But this time I played to my level," said Li, who led 5-2 in the second set and had a set point.

Li became the first Chinese singles player to break into the world's top 30 and was the first to be seeded in singles at a Grand Slam tournament when she got the 27th spot for Wimbledon.

She also made history by becoming the first Chinese player top reach the last eight of a major.

"Overall her game is very good," Clijsters said. "Her backhand sets up a lot of points for her and then with her forehand, she finishes it off. She moves really well, has a good serve. I had to play really good tennis and aggressive tennis to beat her.

"If she has more experience and gets to play more of these kind of big matches it's not going to take her long to one of these days make a breakthrough in the Grand Slams. She has top 10 potential."

Jul 14th, 2006, 01:26 PM

14 Jul 2006 - International Tennis Centre, Beijing, China P.R. - Lei Lei

China strives for World Group

Back home after their Wimbledon success, the Chinese women’s tennis team is ready for the 2006 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group play-off tie this weekend. China and Germany will meet at the Beijing International Tennis Centre with the winner moving to the World Group.

Play starts on Saturday with the draw having decided that China’s No. 1 singles player Na Liwill take on German’s No.2 singles player Kristina Barrois in the first match, with the rest of the draw as follows:

Na Li (CHN) v Kristina Barrois (GER)
Jie Zheng (CHN) v Kathrin Woerle (GER)
Na Li (CHN) v Kathrin Woerle (GER)
Jie Zheng (CHN) v Kristina Barrois (GER)
Jie Zheng/Zi Yan (CHN) v Tatiana Malek/ Jasmin Woehr (GER)

Although China was defeated by Germany in both previous meetings in 1982 and 1984, the home team has a clear advantage this time since all the Chinese singles players rank higher than their Germany opponents, and the host team also features player Jie Zheng and player Zi Yan the newly-crowned Wimbledon doubles champions.

Chinese are tired but inspired

The Chinese players are hoping to recover from a lengthy tour in Europe and are striving for the victory on home soil...

Although the Chinese team is cautious about predicting victory, it has an ideal opportunity to jump into the World Group this time.
Li became the first Chinese player to make the quarter-finals at the All-England Club and has again refreshed the ranking history, by reaching No. 22. Zheng’s singles ranking is No. 34 at present. Yan and Zheng added a first Wimbledon title following their trophy at the Australian Open earlier this year.

Germany without Groenefeld

For the German team, it will be a tough weekend as it is without its No. 1, the 16th-ranked Anna-Lena Groenefeld, who suffered an ankle injury in the doubles at Wimbledon.
“The draw is not really very exciting,” said Barbara Rittner, captain of the German team. “We didn’t care who starts as Kristina is ready to play as well as the Chinese team. It (the draw) doesn’t really matter. We hope to play good matches and see what happens.”
In the first match, German’s Barrois will play her first Fed Cup rubber, but has to face China’s top singles player Li,
“It’s the first time. That’s sure. But I’m very happy to play,” said Barrois, world No 129.

Following Barrois’s debut, Kathrin Woerle will make her Fed Cup debut against Zheng in the second singles rubber.

Jul 18th, 2006, 03:39 PM
Chinese Success Continues

China started its bid for promotion to World Group with Na Li and Jie Zheng defeating Germany's Kristina Barrois and Kathrin Woerle respectively to lead 2-0 after the first day of the 2006 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group Play-off tie on Saturday in Beijing. China’s No 1 Li defeated Barrois 6-3, 6-4, while Zheng beat German No. 1 Woerle 6-4, 7-5.

Li wins opener

The start of the first rubber between Li and Barrois was very tight. The opening set went with serve, until Li broke for the first time in the sixth game to lead 4-2. Returning the ball with great depth and controlling the baseline well, Li won the first set easily 6-3, in 27 minutes.
Although ranked much lower than Li, Barrois, the world No. 129, caused Li, the world No. 22, more trouble in the second set.
There was an exchange of service breaks at the start of the second set, as Barrois’s control of the net proved effective. But Li regained her form quickly and kept pace with the German to 4-4.
Barrois saved one break point in the ninth game but Li’s quick movement and powerful hitting of the ball frustrated her. Li broke to lead 5-4. In the next game, Li took the match on her third match point.

“I have tried my best and I should thank the home fans,” Li said after winning the one hour, 14 minute match. “I think her serve is good and her strategy is good as well.”

Despite losing the match, Barrois, on her Fed Cup debut, was satisfied with her performance and praised her component’s technique.
“Her backhand is so fast and that’s not easy for me,” said Barrois. “I tried to play more on the forehand and I did that well. I think I have done my best.”

Tired Zheng struggle to win

Zheng extended China’s lead to 2-0 in the second rubber, but experienced a tough match. Her nerves caused her to drop serve in the first game and she trailed 2-4 after six games. Zheng steadied herself and broke back twice to seal the first set 6-4 in 42 minutes.

In a dramatic second set, Zheng broke in the fourth game and went on to lead 5-2, before Woerle broke back in the ninth game and held her own serve to go 5-5. Zheng would not let her opportunity go and broke again in the 12th game to wrap up the match and lift China to a 2-0 lead.

After the match, Zheng said she was not in her best form due to her recent tough schedule.

“In the first set, I was a little bit nervous since I was playing in front of my home fans,” said Zheng, the world No. 34. “During the match, my serve improved a lot. But since I just came back from eight tournaments in Europe and just started training on Wednesday, I was very tired in the second set.”

Woerle loses focus…and her chance

Woerle admitted that the slight change of her mindset cost her the first set.

“I started very well in the match. I played aggressive and then it was 4-2. But suddenly I started to think about how well everything was going,” said Woerle. “Her rank is around 30 but I’m at 154. So I thought, what was going on here. I started thinking and I didn’t play aggressive any more and then she started to play her game.”

“She did not miss until the middle of the second set and then it was 4-1 to her. Suddenly I focused again and stopped thinking, just to play my game. Then it went well again but in the end she was the better player. That’s why she No. 30 in the world. She takes her chances.”

China need just one more point to secure their World Group place in next years’ Fed Cup by BNP Paribas event. In Sunday’s singles Li will aim to secure a winning lead against Woerle, followed by Zheng to face Barrois. Zheng is also scheduled to team up with Zi Yan to meet Tatiana Malek/ Jasmin Woehr in the final doubles match.


Jul 18th, 2006, 03:41 PM
China's dreams come true

China has secured its place in the Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group for next year's competition after Chinese No. 1 singles player Na Li defeated German’s Kathrin Woerle 75 75 in the decisive third rubber of the 2006 Fed Cup by BNP Paribas World Group Play-off tie in Sunday in Beijing.

The Chinese team took an unassailable 3-0 lead over Germany, while the visiting team has suffered relegation from the World Group to World Group II.

“Playing on home soil is much better than in other countries,” said Li, the world No. 22. “I felt there are so many supporters behind me.”

Li struggles to win

Despite failing to find the form she showed in the first rubber on Saturday, Li started aggressively by breaking Woerle in the second game and led 3-0 in only eight minutes. But Woerle, ranked No. 154, quickly recovered and her high quality serves caused Li much trouble, going on to level at 5-5. But Li left gave her opponent no chances in the following two games and broke in the 12th game to win the first set 75 in 38 minutes.

Woerle’s powerful and varied serves continued to work in the second set, and she went on to break Li in the fifth game en route to a 5-3 lead. However she missed a chance to win the set, losing two set points in the tenth game to be broken by her fighting opponent. Li then dominated the last two games to win the second set by the same 75 scoreline.

“I felt Woerle’s balls are a little bit strange, and I couldn’t play smoothly,” said Li. “Compared with yesterday, I did not pay 100 per cent attention.”

Woerle praised her opponent highly

Although losing the match, Woerle has caused much trouble to her opponent, whose world ranking is much higher than hers. After the match, Woerle praised Li highly.

“I had two set points in the second set, but I didn’t play badly at that point,” said the 22-year-old German. “But Li is so much more confident because she just played the quarterfinals at Wimbledon. She can say: 'Who cares. I am at a higher level and I just need to play properly.’ And that's what she did. If she plays that well, I can’t do anything.”

“Bad luck for Germany”

Although Germany held a 2-0 head-to-head advantage against China before this match, the two-time champion now suffers relegation from the World Group. They had to compete without their top player Anna-Lena Groenefeld, the world No. 16, who missed the tie due to a foot injury.

“The last clash between China and Germany was in 1984. So you can’t really compare to that,” said Woerle. “It’s a fact that China is an upcoming country in all kinds of sports. They have improved a lot. As to the German team, before we had Steffi Graf and Anke Huber. They really are top players. Now we have Groenefeld, who is a top twenty player. But this time she was not here. She was injured. So, bad luck for us. It would be tough even with her against China.”


Jul 18th, 2006, 03:50 PM
Sunday July 16, 06:29 PM

Li blasts China into Fed Cup elite

BEIJING, July 16 (Reuters) - Li Na blasted China to another milestone on their march to power status in women's tennis when she secured her country a place in the Fed Cup elite for the first time on Sunday.
The world number 22 found her best form just when she needed to in a 7-5 7-5 victory over Germany's Kathrin Woerle, which gave China an unassailable 3-0 lead in their World Group playoff at the Beijing International Tennis Centre.

China, who eventually took the tie by a 4-1 margin, will now play in the eight-team World Group in 2007, while twice Fed Cup champions Germany were relegated to the second tier of the women's international team competition.

The victory was another first in a breakthrough year in which Li became the first Chinese player to reach the singles quarter-finals at a grand slam, and Zheng Jie and Yan Zi secured the country's first major titles in the women's doubles at the Australian Open and Wimbledon.

"It's much easier playing at home," Li told reporters. "Today I could feel a great number of people behind me, supporting and encouraging me."

Germany were weakened by the absence of injured world number 16 Anna-Lena Groenefeld.

Both Woerle and Kristian Barrois, who lost to Li in the opening singles match on Saturday, were making their debuts for the country.


Brimming with confidence after reaching the last eight at Wimbledon this month, Li raced into a 3-0 lead in the first set before Woerle found her feet sufficiently to take advantage of her opponent's frequent mistakes and break back.

"The way the German girls played was a little strange to me," Li added. "I wasn't as concentrated as I was yesterday."

She bided her time, though, and won the set with another break in the 12th game when her opponent sent a forehand long.

Woerle showed great spirit and won another break in the fifth game of the second set but again Li saved her best for when it really mattered.

At two set points down, the 23-year-old found another gear and rode out of trouble on the back of some fierce forehands and equally unplayable backhands, securing China's historic progress with her 31st winner.

"It was my first time playing a top 30 player," Woerle said. "When I was serving for the second set, she gave me no chance at all on three of the points.

"I think she's going to be at the top for a while."

With the tie settled, Olympic doubles champion Sun Tiantian stood in for Zheng in the final singles match and lost 4-6 6-3 6-3 to Tatiana Malek.

Zheng and Yan beat Malek and Jasmin Woehr 6-3 6-4 in the final rubber.

Aug 14th, 2006, 01:51 PM

Source: China Daily人民日报 :smash:

Chinese women's tennis team on centre court

Sep 4th, 2006, 04:00 PM
Li Na: Revolutionary talent?
By Jerry Magee
September 4, 2006

NEW YORK – China is supposed to represent an emerging nation in the international tennis community, but so far all the emerging is being done by one woman, Li Na, possibly a tennis revolution unto herself.

Not that she considers herself as such. Having removed Mary Pierce last night in the third round of the U.S. Open 4-6, 6-0, 6-0, she today opposes Maria Sharapova, whom she has engaged three times.
“Never win one set,” said Li, who speaks some English.
Maybe today. “Yeah, hope so,” she said.

In getting past Pierce, Li made a point that had been largely forgotten at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center: that women are competing in this event. As much as Andre Agassi has been commanding matters, the women's phase of the Open has been an afterthought.

Now, though, Agassi is gone, dismissed yesterday by Benjamin Becker of Germany, and the Open can awake to the deeds of Li, Sharapova, Serena Williams, Amelie Mauresmo and others.

Li, 24, from Wuhan, Hubei, China, is not overwhelmed by being in the round of 16 here, nor should she be. She clearly is extremely fit, as she demonstrated in sweeping through the last two sets against a tiring Pierce.

“Not nervous,” Li said of her approach to engaging Pierce. “Excitement.”

Li's play against Pierce continued her strong efforts this season in Grand Slams. At the Australian Open, she took Serena Williams to a third set. At the French Open, she gained the third round before losing in two close sets to Svetlana Kuznetsova. At Wimbledon, she was a quarterfinalist, defeating Kuznetsova and Nicole Vaidisova before surrendering in two close sets to Kim Clijsters.

Ask Li how far she feels she can go here and she smiles and says, “Final?” but she says it as if it were a question.

Sharapova moved up opposite Li by outplaying Elena Likhovtseva 6-3, 6-2. Sharapova is quite aware of the player from China.

“Yeah, she's improving with every month,” Sharapova said. “She's a very tough and solid player. Great mover on the court. Gonna make me hit a lot of balls, obviously.”

The woman who has been most impressive here is Williams, a 6-2, 6-4 winner over one of the comers in the women's game, Ana Ivanovic of Serbia.

“I'm feeling better, thank you,” Williams said. “I'm definitely feeling close to 100 percent physically. But more than that, I just feel like I'm trying to play my game and working on things that I worked on in practice.”

Williams is to challenge Mauresmo, the No. 1 seed, in this evening's feature in Arthur Ashe Stadium. The Frenchwoman's passage has been a trying one; she again was extended in getting past Mara Santangelo of Italy 6-3, 2-6, 6-2.

Williams is 9-1 against Mauresmo and has swept the players' last four encounters.

“When she's playing well, she just does everything great,” Mauresmo said. “She's hitting hard on both sides. She's serving well. She likes to take control of the points. That's when she's playing well, when she's at her best level.

“I haven't seen her play since she came back from her injuries, but she's still using the same type of game. She likes to play in one or two shots.”

Sep 10th, 2006, 08:09 PM

Li Na Of China To Partner With Serbian Jankovic In China Open Women's Doubles

September 10, 2006 10:31 a.m. EST

Komfie Manalo - All Headline News Foreign Correspondent

Beijing, China (AHN) - China's top ranked female tennis player and 22nd in the world, Li Na, has confirmed Sunday she is teaming up with Jelena Jankovic of Serbia and Montenegro in the coming China Open Women's Doubles in the WTA tournament scheduled on September 16.

Li, who has partnered with countryman Pen Shuai in the last few years, failed miserably in the women's doubles event. They were humiliated again in the first round of the U.S. Open, 7-5, 6-4, by the tandem of Marta Domachowska of Poland and Jelena Kostanic of Croatia.

Li said the 21-year-old Jankovic, who stands number 20th on the WTA world rankings, is in perfect shape when she staged a good performance in the U.S. Open before losing to Belgian Justine Henin-Hardenne, 4-6, 6-4, 6-0, in the quarterfinals.

She told China's Xinhua news agency, "The coming contenders include Mauresmo, Davenport, Vaidisova and Kuznetsova, any of whom are higher ranked than me. I just want to play my best. No goal, and no stress."

The 24-year-old said, "I really enjoy the days ahead of the China Open as I rest in the morning and go to fitness center in the afternoon. The China Open is followed at heel by Guangzhou International Open and then I will enter for some other events before the year-end Asian Games. It seems hard for me to slow down for break.

"There are good news, I have a good ankle already."

Nov 21st, 2006, 12:24 PM
Here I would like to post some interviews by China media which I’ve translated before in another thread: :p


......说到美网的比赛,李娜的用词非常简单:“还行,我觉得今年自己一直表现得还不错。”..... 至于这个名次是不是会让人失望,李娜表示:“只要有了成绩,人们对我就会有更高的期望值,温网进了八强,大 家就希望美网也是如此。其实,每次比赛状态、条件和遭遇的对手都不同,不可能永远保持一个水平。所以我会注 意,不要给自己太大的压力。” ....她表示:“打了两场硬仗,我觉得确实信心出来了。越是艰难的比赛,一旦战胜对手,就会想‘原来我可 以的,我做到了’。”这次中网,女单阵容尽管非常豪华,李娜也没有给自己制定什么硬性的目标:“我还是那样 ,好好打好我的球,能走多远走多远。”

...Talking about her performance in USO, Li Na’s reply is quite brief:"I think I have been doing quite well since this year.”
" After i have won two hard battles against top players, I feel more confident now especially when I have won the tougher matches.
I think, oh, I can do it."

" When you have achieved some good results, people would expect more out of you. I was quarterfinalist in Wimbledon and they thought I could do the same in US Open. Actually, I cannot maintain the same level every time I play. It depends on the fact if I'm in good shape, what opponents I will be facing. I have got to take care not to exert much pressure on myself."

Na did not set a goal for China Open, “ Like before, I will try to play my best tennis, how far i can go, let it be. (Que sera sera, whatever will be will be, the result is not ours to see…)

Another version of the interview by sina:

Re: Anticipation of China Open
李娜:“去年第一轮就输了,呵呵,希望今年打得好一些。这次来的选手中有很多强手,很多人都比我世界排名高 ,可能到时候我连种子选手都不是。不过我会努力打好比赛的,重要的是调整心态,放下包袱和压力 去比赛。”
Li Na: "Last year I was out the 1st round, haha, I hope to play better this year. A lot of tough players are coming this time. Many players rankings are higher than mine. Maybe I could not be seeded then. But I will try to play well. It is important to adjust my mentality and shake off the burdens and pressures to play."

Re: Match with Maria in USO
Li Na: " I don’t think our gap is as big as imagined. My confidence increases a bit more each time I play her.

Re: Reaching for the Top 10
李娜说:“在我现在这个排名,想上升一位都不容易,更别提前十了,这确实需要相当的努力,难度真的是很大。 ”
Li Na: "According to my ranking now, it is not easy to raise one rank, not to mention top10 breakthrough. It is very difficult, requires huge efforts."

Reoprt from sohu:

李娜:别人问我以后做什么,我说要做家庭妇女,很多人都不相信。但是这是真的,我就想做一个简单的家庭妇女 。
Sohu: What will you do when you retire?
Li Na: Some people ask what I'd like to do after retirement. I told them I wanted to be a housewife. Many people don’t believe it. But it is true.

Sohu: Let's talk about your future career, above all, It is something in suspension if you are able to reach top10?

Li Na: To tell the truth, it is more and more difficult for me to climb upward. Maybe it is not difficult to reach top10 once by chance but it's difficult to stay in that league or level for a long time.

Nov 21st, 2006, 12:30 PM

Sunday November 19, 11:17 AM

Chang frustrated in attempt to help Chinese Olympians

SHANGHAI, Nov 19 (Reuters) - Former French Open champion Michael Chang has been frustrated in his attempts to offer the benefit of his experience to China's Olympic tennis players.
The Chinese-American has been in his parents' homeland for six weeks and despite his best efforts only got to meet Sun Jingfang of the China Tennis Association (CTA) earlier this week.

"I feel a bit frustrated," Chang told reporters at the Masters Cup, adding that he was unimpressed with state media reports of his meeting with the CTA director.

"It made it sound like I was applying for a job ... If she's thinking that I was applying for a job, that's not the case," he said.

"My guess is that she has some reservations, she mentioned that I was obviously a good tennis player but didn't have any experience as a coach.

"I don't necessarily agree with her opinion on that."

Chang, who extended his trip to China to commentate on the season-ending tournament for a local TV station, thinks he is in a unique position to help the country's top players.

"I thought it would be a good thing to share some of my experiences on the tour with the players to help them get to the next level," said the former world number two, who retired in 2003 after 15 years as a professional.

"I had expressed my interest in the possibility of training with the Olympic team for 2008 but it's getting late now," he added.

"Clearly the women's team have the best chance of winning gold, they already have a doubles gold from the Athens Games, but in the singles they have good players like Li Na and Peng Shuai."


However good they are, Chang said, to win gold on home soil in 2008 they would have to beat the likes of Maria Sharapova, Justine Henin-Hardenne and Amelie Mauresmo.

"This is where I think I can help," he said. "Li Na is capable of beating the best players in the world but you've got to play smart.

"I know they've got good coaches and they've done good things but I don't think they necessarily have the experience to take the players to the next level.

"The best players are the best players because they can handle the pressure of life on the tour."

Chang said he was not taking up an offer to go to the Jiangmen training camp because he needed to return to the U.S. for Thanksgiving.

"The Beijing Olympics are a once in a lifetime opportunity for China to show what it can do," said the 34-year-old, whose 106-year-old great grandmother still lives in Guangdong province.

"In my mind for them to win a gold medal, especially in tennis, would be a wonderful thing and that's why I want to help."

Nov 21st, 2006, 04:35 PM


“训练开始,慢跑几圈后,在托马斯教练的指导下,李娜开始与两名二队的女队员练习底线球。从底线的对抽到大 角度的调动,再到网前的小球,李娜都能应付自如。在旁边陪练的托马斯教练一边发球一边不时地喊 着“More Speed”,看来外教对李娜回球的速度还不满意。在每球的间隙,托马斯还会走过去跟李娜谈她每个球的处理 ,甚至还亲身示范脚步移动的方法。紧接着托马斯亲自上阵,在场地的另一边发球,开始训练李娜的网前球技术, 对于不同落点的来球,托马斯都要求李娜的回球要落在相对应的区域。每当李娜击出一些落点较好的回球时,托马 斯的“Good,Very Good”等鼓励性的叫喊就会在球场的上空响起。”

A Training Session of five “gold flowers”
(“Head coach" to be Thomas Hogsted having coached top10 players with his own career high top38)

The training started with a few rounds of slow running (jogging). Then under the guidance of Thomas coach, Li Na with two girls of Team 2 started practising from ground strokes, cross courts to drop shots & lobs etc. Li Na could handle them pretty easily. Thomas occasionally shouted” more speed” while serving, looking like he was not satisfied with Na’s return speed. At every interval, Thomas would like to explain how to play each ball and demonstrate the right footwork.

Finally Thomas himself got on the other side of the net serving to train her approach shot & volley skills. Thomas asked Na to return each ball to the specified zone. Every time when Na hit some beautiful placement, the encouraging words as ” good, very good” from could be heard around the court.

Sun TianTian’s coach Zhang Qi returned to national team after a long sick leave. The Australia coaches are also out there....

Nov 21st, 2006, 06:34 PM
thanks! I think the article says six flowers instead of five but I could be wrong

Nov 21st, 2006, 07:17 PM
Thanks 1star ! :D :worship: :bounce: ;)

Dec 3rd, 2006, 05:49 AM
I didnt pay attention to your post. Did you notice i put a bracket and quotation mark in the subtitle i added?
Besides,Thomas was not only helping Na but other players as well. He was hosting the whole winter training program as planned in advance. Here is the link::cool:


Dec 3rd, 2006, 09:34 AM
You beat me. :weirdo:
I thought you know what is "boss",but....
I hope you know Wan-Ting is a famale player.
So what's wrong? I don't know. Everything goes well.:lol:
In spite of your flag (you used to use a Chinese flag) you are from Hong Kong, not from Canada, and you are still in Hong Kong now. :rolleyes: I think you should know the difference between " too" and "either" next time:weirdo: Anyway it is not important. :lol:

In a broad sense, your father, your manager and anybody could be your boss.:cool: I didnt have to use boss to refer to a coach on short term mission.

Yeah, i should tell it by the name that Ting is usually used to refer to a femal. But you dont have to use hyphen here. Also you got to learn the function of "quotation" mark and the title effect.:rolleyes:

Dec 3rd, 2006, 10:54 AM
Blur blur blur, I meant you confused "too" and "either"... and you were not a native speaker. You dont have to question my understanding of boss.

You can say wherever you were born. You are in China and using Canadian flag. It doesn't matter.:rolleyes:

We all know HK-andy is using HK flag here. You are telling me? I already told you the meaning of "boss". Dont need to explain more. you wanted to make a mess in this thread.:cool:

Dec 3rd, 2006, 12:02 PM
The person who makes a mess in this forum is YOU!
This forum is always peaceful when you're not here.:lol:
Many Chinese fans told me that they don't wanna go here because YOU ARE HERE.
You have been a trouble maker in another tennis forum as many people know,so you wanna do it again here?:silly:
I tried to be friendly with you,but my brain told me I'll be crazy if I insist this.:banghead:
My home is in Vancouver.I'd be happy if you wanna be my guest.I'd send you to our local bughouse.You can use whatever flags you wanted:lol: You can spread whatever rumours you like. You wanted to diverge the topic again.:p A lot of people in other forums said you were a big boaster and liar. Someone already told me you lied to him about me.:fiery:

Ask Pierce0415 if i had told him that i had put you on my ignore list for a long time when i explained about "5 gold flowers" and 6 gold flowers.". i know he was joking there.

You are extreamly persistant here too. You started the argument here and there. Many of us didnt think Peng had an open heart operation and you kept on the topic for a long time and proved stupid....:o

i never talk to you for a long time here. Check the records here.:lol:

Dec 3rd, 2006, 12:59 PM
Oh people, it was only a misunderstanding.

Come on, 2oo7 season is coming... :yeah: now let's gonna enjoy together The Asian Games :D

Now I have a lot of work and don't have much time to be here. I miss you :p But I will have holidays soon for Christmas :)

Dec 3rd, 2006, 01:22 PM
You can regard all thing as lies when it's bad for your reputation.
It's a good way to relax yourself.
BTW,I haven't posted in other tennis forums by now.
Who is spreading rumours this time?? :lol:

Exactly,we can say all we want here,but others have objective jugdement.

Guys,Wanna know why we seldom see Chinese fans post in Na's cheering thread? Please ask one of them.They'll tell you the real reason.Everyday you are talking in another forum. Who is lying now??:lol: :lol: :lol:
You talked in another forum if not today. I didnt check it. You are nearly 100% concentrated on tennis forums. :cool:

Before i came here there were only about 1000 posts here. I got more votes than you when they selected kinda good fans in this general message forum here. :p

Who believe you? I only fought with you here before and you sent me PM telling me you misunderstood me. And you didnt understand...:rolleyes: :lol: And i didnt reply you.

Dec 6th, 2006, 07:42 PM
Top seeded China suffers early exit from women's team eventhttp://english.people.com.cn/images/3zoom.gif printResizeButton(); http://english.people.com.cn/images/plus.gif (javascript:void(0);)http://english.people.com.cn/200612/06/images/spacer.gif http://english.people.com.cn/images/minus.gif (javascript:void(0);)
Much-hyped Chinese tennis suffered a heavy blow in the Doha Asian Games as the top-seeded Chinese women lost to Uzbekistan (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/uzbekistan.html) at the team quarter-finals on Tuesday.
Although Chinese women have started to shine in Grand Slam events like Australia (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/australia.html)n Open and Wimbledon, they didn't show their professional brilliance in Doha,
Zheng Jie, ranked 33rd in the world, didn't hit the top gear as she lost the first singles to 208th-ranked Akgul Amanmuradova 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 in two hours and 38 minutes.
Asia's No. 1 and the world's 21st-ranked Li Na (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/features/aoyun2000/star/Li_na.htm) was not in form either, conceding a 6-4, 1-6, 6-1 game to Asian Games singles defending champion Iroda Tulyaganova.
Li, who made history by entering the last eight in Wimbledon this year, belted an uncharacteristic 48 unforced errors.
"I am content with the players' performance as they played well today. We prepared a lot for the match but it seemed that the players were too eager to win, which made them a little bit nervous," said Sun Jinfang, team manager of the Chinese team.
"It might be a good thing to lose a match at the Asian Games as our ultimate goal is the Beijing (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/province/beijing.html) Olympics. We still have time to find out and make up for what we lack."
China, who came into Doha as the hottest favorites for the women's tennis events, withdrew from the meaningless doubles game.

Dec 7th, 2006, 08:28 PM
its a bit sad. now focus on singles and doubles now, chinese girls :rocker2:

Dec 11th, 2006, 07:04 PM
Top seed Li expects all-Chinese final at Asiad tennis women's singleshttp://english.people.com.cn/images/3zoom.gif printResizeButton(); http://english.people.com.cn/images/plus.gif (javascript:void(0);)http://english.people.com.cn/200612/11/images/spacer.gif http://english.people.com.cn/images/minus.gif (javascript:void(0);)
Chinese top player Li Na (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/features/aoyun2000/star/Li_na.htm) said on Sunday that she is looking forward to an all-Chinese women's singles final at the Asian Games tennis tournament.
The world No. 21-ranked Li, who toppled Japan (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/japan.html)ese veteran Ai Sugiyama, now ranked 26th, to become the top Asian player in 2006, did not sweat to overcome Indonesia (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/indonesia.html)'s Sandy Gumulya 6-1, 6-3 in the second round of the Dec. 4-14 tournament.
"I played my best tennis, because I did not know much about my opponent. I've never played against her before," said Li, who had a bye in the opening round.
"Although I did not have to play as hard as I can, I didn't want to drop my guard, especially after what happened in the team event where I lost my first match.
"I cried all day after that."
The Chinese women's players, who came into Doha as the hottest favorites, were upset by Uzbekistan (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/uzbekistan.html) in their opening match of the team event on December 5, with Li losing to currently 132nd-ranked Iroda Tulyaganova in the second singles tie.
"I hope it will be an all-Chinese final (in women's singles)," she said. "After my loss in the team event, everyone was telling me to relax. My mother sent me a text message in the morning to tell me to be confident. I said I am Okey."

Jan 17th, 2007, 03:40 PM
Li Na going mental
By Martin Parry

CHINESE No.1 Li Na swept into the Australian Open second round today and credited a new mental toughness in helping her zoom up the world rankings.

Seeded No.19 at Melbourne Park but ranked No.16 in the world, Li is at the forefront of China's emergence as a credible tennis nation, breaking through with a quarter-final appearance at Wimbledon last year.
She easily dispatched Elena Bovina from Russia 6-4 6-3 in her delayed opening match to set up a second-round encounter with Lourdes Dominguez Lino from Spain.
Li said while her game was much the same as this time last year, her mental attitude had improved.

http://mercury.tiser.com.au/IMPCNT/ccid=17077/acc_random=25108528/SITE=FOXS/AREA=SPORT.TENNIS/AAMSZ=300x250/pageid=96109080 http://mercury.tiser.com.au/nserver/SITE=FOXS/AREA=SPORT.TENNIS/AAMSZ=300x250/pageid=1 (http://www.wtaworld.com/)

"It's in the mind," she said.
"My game is not so different from last year when I lost in the first round (to seven-times grand slam champion Serena Williams) but mentally I am much tougher. That is the difference.
"I am feeling very good. I really didn't want to lose in the first round here. It is a Grand Slam and they are very important to me."
Li has had an encouraging start to her season, reaching the semi-finals at the Medibank International in Sydney last week before eventual champion Kim Clijsters ended her run.
Li has been working on her groundstrokes ahead of the new season and troubled Clijsters throughout the match, prompting the Belgian to praise her development as a player.
"She's definitely become a lot more consistent," Clijsters said.
"The last few times I played her I felt like she was a good player and she could really show some really good things, but she was never quite consistent enough to make it hard for the top players, something I think she has changed."
Li is now working with a new coach, her husband Jiang Shan, which she says is one reason why she is more consistent.
But Jiang is not in Australia, failing to apply for a visa in time, meaning long-distance phone calls to discuss tactics.
"For me, it has been working very well having him as my coach. I call him every day," she said.
The only problem for her in Australia has been the weather, which has been sizzling. Her winter training in China was in freezing conditions.
"The weather here has been a battle. I have been training in China where it is cold, but I am getting used to it."
While the 24-year-old from Wuhan is at the vanguard of China's push for success in Melbourne, in the past she has been called temperamental, a choker and has even been accused of having a weak mentality by her own tennis federation.
But she dismisses any friction with the China Tennis Association, which criticised her for not winning the Asian Games title in Doha last month.
"There are no problems. Everything is fine. The Chinese tennis authorities set very high standards for me at the Asian Games and unfortunately I didn't do as well as I hoped."

Jan 18th, 2007, 04:23 PM
Steve Waldon
January 18, 2007

"LOOK, there're 20 million tennis players in China; a couple of them have to be good," said HG Nelson, barking ideas down the blower yesterday morning.
"The Australian Open is the only Asian slam. Go out there and find them — someone from China or Japan or Taipei or East Timor — tell us if they can play," the famous sports critic and occasional Age columnist roared.
When it comes to the swinging of racquets and heaps of balls, I only take orders from two people — HG Nelson is one, and the other is in charge of my salary.
So court 13 at 11am it was, steaming like a trout in silver foil with the humidity at 1 million. There was Na Li, the trim 24-year-old from Hubei province, 19th seed, scampering after everything Russia's Elena Bovina tossed across the net.
Bovina should be no pushover: in 2005 she was ranked 14 in women's singles, and at 189 centimetres she is an imposing presence.
But a bung shoulder wiped out Bovina last year. Perhaps she was a little unlucky to be on the comeback path while Li has her sights fixed on fulfilling what people say is a promising career.
Bovina has an attractive grunt, which coincides perfectly with the departure of the ball from her racquet. It's not the Sharapova grunt, which sounds like, "I think the elastic in my undies is fraying." Nor is it the Seles, always suggestive of something like, "Put down that bloody knife, you'll do someone a mischief in a minute."
Bovina's grunt has an intonation and timbre that is pure Moscow. It's all sleet, vodka and holidays on the Barents Sea.
It sets her apart.
So does her tennis, but yesterday in a bad way. She double-faulted to lose the match, freeing Li to have her photo taken with a small but knowledgeable posse of fans.
Li's husband is also her coach. The fact that he didn't have a visa for this event might be a small impediment, but by the time she had beaten Bovina 6-4, 6-3, it didn't look like it.
Anyway, Li said, she had plenty of motivation in not wanting to fall at the first hurdle, as she did here last year. "Every point, I tell myself, you can do it — trust yourself," she said later.
And then it was out with the Fairfax compass to find court 11, which distinguishes itself from the scene of Li's triumph only by being within smelling distance of the barbecue bar at Garden Square.
Maybe 40 spectators were watching as Chinese duo Tiantian Sun and Shengnan Sun hustled around the court and bustled at the net, meeting between points in those little conspiratorial huddles doubles players love.
They were up against France's Stephanie Foretz and Poland's Klaudia Jans. Jans is not even listed in the Association of Tennis Professionals book, but she will be.
She has a solid game, but yesterday she and Foretz found it difficult to establish any rhythm against the Suns, who are not sisters but have an intuitive understanding that siblings often do.
Tiantian is a right-hander, Shengnan a lefty. It was all Foretz and Jans could do to find a spot, even on the wider doubles court, that the Suns couldn't get to. You don't want to sit the ball up on Tiantian Sun's forehand, because she swats it hard and at a diabolical angle.
When they lost 6-2, 6-4, Jans looked truly disconsolate. It was the wounded look of a player who wants more.
Like Na Li earlier, the Suns grinned and posed for photos.
So, HG, Asian tennis could go gangbusters. Roger Federer wants more tournaments there than in Europe and the States.
When the Malaysian Open becomes the fifth Grand Slam event in 2009, you'll look like a genius.

Jan 18th, 2007, 05:17 PM
Thx Will :D :bowdown:

Na, :hearts: :worship:

Jan 30th, 2007, 06:19 PM
China's Li learns fast to win in Tokyo

Tue Jan 30, 2007 7:51 AM GMThttp://i.today.reuters.co.uk/images/spacer.gif
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By Alastair Himmer
TOKYO, Jan 30 (Reuters) - China's Li Na continued her fine early season form by thrashing American Lilia Osterloh 6-3 6-2 in the first round of the Pan Pacific Open on Tuesday.
Sixth seed Li, who had never previously played on the slick indoor carpet in Tokyo, took advantage of rules allowing on-court coaching at the $1.3 million tournament to cruise into the last 16. "When I practiced on the court I thought 'How can they play on this?'" Li told Reuters. "I needed to talk to my coach during the match too... but I think I played okay."

The fast-improving Li reached the semi-finals in Sydney before pushing Martina Hingis to three sets in the fourth round of the Australian Open.
"I had a good start in Sydney," Li said. "After Sydney, I told myself I could do it. My ranking has never been top 20 and now I'm 17 I know I can play better."
Meanwhile, fifth seed Ana Ivanovic also advanced to the second round, the Serb overpowering American Shenay Perry 6-4 6-2.
However, Slovakia's Daniela Hantuchova became the first big-name casualty when she beaten 6-4 6-4 by Italian Roberta Vinci.
Eighth seed Hantuchova, once a top-five player, paid the price for an error-strewn performance as she fell to her second first-round defeat in four tournaments in 2007.
In other matches, qualifier Nicole Pratt of Australia beat American Meghann Shaughnessy 6-7 6-1 6-4 while Severine Bremond trounced fellow Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli 6-0 6-2. World number one Maria Sharapova and four-times champion Hingis head a quality field in Tokyo. The top four seeds received first round byes.

Jan 30th, 2007, 06:36 PM
Awesome article!

Jan 31st, 2007, 03:46 AM
nice articles

I really enjoy reading that. thanks

Feb 3rd, 2007, 10:22 AM
its not a bad result for her debut in tokyo :)

Feb 7th, 2007, 05:11 PM
Li Na matures for greater success

Updated: 2007-02-07 16:24

Li Na has been described temperamental and even been accused of having a weak mentality.
But the 24-year-old from Wuhan has gone through the criticism and has proved her talent as she raced up the rankings from 277 in 2002 to sit at a career high 16 ahead of last month's Australian Open.
China's Li Na eyes the ball during her match against Switzerland's Martina Hingis at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne January 22, 2007. [Reuters]
At last year's Wimbledon Li became the first Chinese player to reach the quarter-finals of a grand slam singles before losing to Belgian Kim Clijsters.
"I won't forgive myself if I get eliminated in the first round at the Grand Slams," Li said after pushing Martina Hingis to three sets in the fourth round of the Australian Open.
A former badminton player, Li made her debut in international tennis competitions in 1999 and rose to China's No. 1 soon after claiming four ITF titles. But she put an abrupt end to her promising career in 2002 and entered the Science and Technology University of Central China.
Li returned to competitive tennis at the beginning of 2004 and soon regained her status as the country's top player by winning three ITF races in a row and claiming China's first WTA title in Guangzhou.
"For sure, Li is one of the most talented players in China but her weak mentality hampers her improvement," National Tennis Management Center director Sun Jinfang told reporters last month.
Li, who is notorious for hot temper, said she is getting more mature.
"I used to blame others for losing but now I am learning to look for faults with myself," she said.
Li is the leading light of China's emergence as a tennis nation, with many tipping the country to rival what Russia has achieved (five women players in the top 10) in the coming few years.
"I hope more young players will come up," said Li. "Only when China has a lot of good players can we be considered a strength."
China has been aggressively pushing tennis since Sun Tiantian and Li Ting won a surprise women's doubles gold at the 2004 Olympics.
From having virtually no players capable of challenging the world's best just a few years ago, more than 50 Chinese women players are now listed by the WTA, the women game's governing body.
Two-thirds of them are floundering outside the top 500 but few are betting against at least some of them following in Li's footsteps. Sun Tiantian, Peng Shuai and Yuan Meng are also pushing for singles recognition, while China also has Grand Slam doubles champions in Zheng Jie and Yan Zi, who won the Australian Open and Wimbledon Open last year -- the country's first-ever Grand Slam titles.

Feb 12th, 2007, 11:23 PM
Tennis chief aims to lighten up on Olympic teamhttp://english.people.com.cn/images/3zoom.gif printResizeButton(); http://english.people.com.cn/images/plus.gif (http://javascript<b></b>:void(0);)http://english.people.com.cn/200702/12/images/spacer.gif http://english.people.com.cn/images/minus.gif (http://javascript<b></b>:void(0);)
China's tennis chief Sun Jinfang says she is working hard to take the pressure off players as the 2008 Beijing (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/province/beijing.html) Olympic Games approach.
Sun's assurances came after the country's top player Li Na (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/features/aoyun2000/star/Li_na.htm) said during the recent Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo that she was becoming increasingly nervous about the intense pressure to achieve the "unrealistic goal" of medals at the Games.
Li, a quarterfinalist at Wimbledon last year, advanced to the final 16 in Tokyo last week before being dumped out of the tournament.
Sun, director of the Administrative Center of Tennis, said keeping her players relaxed is a top priority.
"I understand Li and I know she is under heavy pressure," Sun told China Daily.
"I know players are human beings, and I understand the feeling when the whole nation is watching you and expecting a lot from you because I was also a professional athlete some years ago."
A former volleyball player, Sun helped China win three world championships in the 1980's.
"We have been thinking about the right way to relax the players a little bit and we have taken some measures."
In a bid to help the rebellious Li, the center appointed her husband Jiang Shan as her coach, even though Jiang has no coaching qualifications and achieved little of note as a player.
Family involvement is not infrequent in international tennis, but a husband-wife coaching set-up is unprecedented in Chinese professional sporting history.
Romance is prohibited in most national teams to keep athletes focused on their games. Table tennis players and gymnasts even face the prospect of dismissal if caught engaged in physical displays of affection.
"I simply wanted her to feel better on the intense WTA Tour, so we did something hardly seen before in China's sporting history," Sun added.
China's hopes for tennis success in Beijing rose after Li Ting and Sun Tiantian won gold in the women's doubles at the 2004 Athens Olympics.
Adding to expectations is its female players' speedy improvements in the world rankings in recent years, with four now in the top 100 - Li (ranked 17), Zheng Jie (33), Peng Shuai (42) and Sun Tiantian (80).
"There's more pressure after what happened in Athens," said Li. "China will want to win gold in every sport, not just tennis."
But Sun believes Olympic gold is the top task for domestic players in light of the strong state support they receive. In contrast, European and American players usually fund their own careers as they chase down titles.
"For sure the Olympic Games is the most important tournament for Li and her teammates," she said.
"The authorities have invested so much money in coaching and sponsorship for women's tennis, and they offer everything they need to improve on the Tour, so it's the players' responsibility to compete for their country."
China ratcheted up the pressure on its female players last month to ensure they are at the top of their game come summer 2008.
First-round exits will not be considered acceptable and as of June this year players who are eliminated early may have to forfeit their prize money.
Chinese players are now training at a base in Jiangmen. They will leave for the United States (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/usa.html) after the Spring Festival.

Mar 12th, 2007, 03:15 AM
China's Li smashes her way into round of 16 at Indian Wells

China's Li smashes her way into round of 16 at Indian Wells
td.yspwidearticlebody { font-size: 13.5px; }by Greg Heakes
March 11, 2007
INDIAN WELLS, United States (AFP) - Chinese firebrand Li Na battled back under the sweltering California sun to defeat Alona Bondarenko (http://sports.yahoo.com/ten/players/3812/) 5-7, 6-3, 6-2 in a third round match at the Pacific Life Open Sunday.
The 25-year-old from Hubei province advanced to the round of 16 where she will face the winner of a match between Martina Muller (http://sports.yahoo.com/ten/players/171/) and seventh seeded Jelena Jankovic (http://sports.yahoo.com/ten/players/404/).
"I had a good start in the second set and then she came back," Li said. "I told myself to just play my game which is to use my backhand and keep wearing her down from the baseline."
if(window.yzq_d==null)window.yzq_d=new Object();window.yzq_d['2KraAM6.IsU-']='&U=13bdbeuv2%2fN%3d2KraAM6.IsU-%2fC%3d518724.10385602.11028438.1806201%2fD%3dLREC %2fB%3d4392733';With temperatures slated to peak at 37 degrees Celcius (98 Fahrenheit) Sunday, 22-year-old Bondarenko eventually succumbed to the heat and Li's backhand.
"It was a tough match," Li said. "Today was so hard because of the heat. I woke up this morning and I wanted to sleep the whole day but I told myself I better get up because I have a match to play."
She said the turning point in the match was winning the second set.
"After the second set I got more confidence. She had a lot of misses early in the third and then I just held on," said Li, who is travelling with husband Jiang Shan.
Li enjoyed a breakthrough season last year, becoming the first Chinese woman to be ranked in the top 20.
She is the 12th seed at Indian Wells, and if she wins her next match this would be her best finish ever at the 5.3 million dollar hardcourt tournament.
Li, a quarter-finalist at Wimbledon (http://us.rd.yahoo.com/DailyNews/manual/afp/sp_afp/tennisatpwtausa/22230590/*http://news.search.yahoo.com/search/news?fr=news-storylinks&p=%22Wimbledon%22&c=&n=20&yn=c&c=news&cs=nw) last year, is now 10-5 in 2007. She is China's best hope for a medal in women's singles at the 2008 Beijing Olympics but says she is not thinking about the Summer Games just yet. "Right now I want to improve my ranking," Li said. "Maybe next year I will get ready and start thinking about Beijing."

Mar 12th, 2007, 11:34 AM
Thx Will ! :D

Mar 13th, 2007, 07:56 AM
I saw the Chinese version of this interview:)

Mar 14th, 2007, 05:10 AM
Children of the 80s show talent for trouble http://english.people.com.cn/images/3zoom.gif printResizeButton(); http://english.people.com.cn/images/plus.gif (javascript:void(0);)http://english.people.com.cn/200703/14/images/spacer.gif http://english.people.com.cn/images/minus.gif (javascript:void(0);)
Laptop, iPod and Blackberry phone: China's tennis chief Sun Jinfang was surprised at the contents of star player Li Na (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/features/aoyun2000/star/Li_na.htm)'s bag as she packed up after the US Open last year.
"Everything is changing so fast," Sun, who led China's women's volleyball team to multiple world champions in the 1980s, said in an interview with China Daily after the September tournament. "Society is changing, and so are our sports teams and athletes. Sometimes I find dealing with them exhausting."
Like Sun, many Chinese coaches and officials are complaining that athletes born in the 1980s are moving away from the team spirit that first made China a sporting powerhouse.
"There was no 'me' in our team when I was a volleyball player some 20 years ago. The team was the only unit we had," Sun said. "I did everything for the team, not myself, and I think that was the key to our success."
However, the post-1980, One-Child Policy generation are thinking in a different way.
Unlike their parents and grandparents, they grew up in relative affluence and have endured little hardship. They missed the years of war, the rigors of postwar construction and the single-minded drive to catch up to the United States (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/usa.html).
This generation are advocates of individualism, and from the point of view of the coaches, this means trouble.
Twenty-year-old Peng Shuai, Li Na's national teammate, raised a ruckus last year when she refused to get up at 7am for training at the team's base in Jiangmen, Guangdong (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/province/guangdong.html) Province.
"I simply cannot wake up in the morning and I should train at the time I want to," she told head coach Jiang Hongwei.
Officials swiftly got their revenge by making doubles specialist and early-riser Sun Tiantian her new roommate.
Li herself is no stranger to controversy. As well as quitting the team in 2001 and consistently complaining about the quality of coaching, she is also a famed shopaholic.
After splashing out $3,000 on clothes and shoes for her husband during the WTA Dubai Open last year, Li admitted to "going shopping as long as I have some spare time at tournaments."
"I like walking around markets and buying things for my husband and myself. It's quite enjoyable," she added.
The most notorious incident in recent months involved billiards player Zhou Mengmeng, 19, who accused a male teammate of sexually harassing her at December's Doha Asian Games before quitting the tournament.
Officials were angry that Zhou, a Gucci addict who has spoken of her collection of 30 bags, used the media to vent her anger and banned her from domestic competition.
But then her father, a wealthy snooker club owner from Shanghai (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/province/Shanghai.html), responded by filing a lawsuit. The dispute was resolved only when the lawsuit was dropped and Zhou issued a public apology.
"The athletes from one-child families are self-oriented and lack discipline," Deng Yaping, a former table tennis world champion and now member of the Athletes Commission of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), told China Daily last week.
"They have very few opportunities to learn about society and suddenly when they become successful everything is wide open for them. This means it's easy to lose control."
Rising prizing money is another reason for the changing attitudes.
NBA All-star center Yao Ming tops the Forbes 2007 Chinese celebrity rich list with 260 million yuan ($34 million) and 110-meter hurdles world record holder Liu Xiang follows with 58 million yuan ($7.5 million).
Grand Slam champions Zheng Jie and Yan Zi ranked 12th after their combined prize money and sponsorship revenues topped 14 million yuan ($1.8 million).
"I couldn't image so much money when I played volleyball. I just wanted to contribute to my country and never thought about payback," said Sun. "But now there are too many temptations."
Team spirit
Liu Guoliang, head coach of national table tennis team, said team spirit is badly needed ahead of the Beijing (http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/data/province/beijing.html) Olympics.
"I think the spirit is the reason behind our success. You can win nothing without it," he said last year, after kicking Qiu Yike off the national team for getting drunk. "Some of them are selfish and are not mentally as strong as those born in the 1970s. I prefer personality during their matches, not in their social lives."
Another men's table tennis player, Chen Qi, landed himself in hot water with Liu when he kicked a chair and threw his bat after losing in the 2006 Asian Cup.
Authorities punished him by forcing him to spend a week in an army boot camp and another week in a poor rural area, to help him "realize how good his life is and see how poor people live their lives."
Liu later attempted to improve discipline by inviting the country's first astronaut Yang Liwei (http://english.people.com.cn/200310/15/eng20031015_126052.shtml) to lecture players.
Li Na, however, has said her reputation as a troublemaker is undeserved.
"I don't really like being called a maverick or anything like that," she told China Daily last year.
"I have never tried to challenge the authority of the Chinese Tennis Association (CTA), never. I've always felt we are a family and the CTA are my parents. How can I leave my family when trivial problems occur?"
"I am very calm now. I've realized I need to get used to the environment around me and be on my best behavior at all times if I want to keep on improving my tennis on tour."
Deng admitted the fault was not all with the young athletes.
"The problems are normal to some degree," she said. "They are young, famous and rich, you cannot avoid trouble in this situation.
"We need better management, different from the old ways. We need to tell them what is right and not just punish them."
"Those born after 1980 are very active and charismatic, so we have to improve ourselves before managing them," Xin Qingshan, former national short-track skating team, was quoted as saying on Sina.com. "We should try to protect them because the country invests so much in training top athletes. "
Source: China Daily

Mar 15th, 2007, 04:26 PM
not sure if it is posted before.

Chinese Trailblazer Is Used to Going Her Own Way

INDIAN WELLS, Calif., March 14 — Li Na, who advanced to the semifinals of the Pacific Life Open on Wednesday, remembers the first time she defied her coach in China.

At one practice when she was 11, the coach told her, “You must continue,” even though Li said she was tired. Li refused. Again, the coach said, “You must.” Li still said no.

That strict sports school was no place for insubordination. Li was ordered to stand in the same spot during practices until she apologized, which meant staying put for several hours in the morning and several more in the afternoon. It took the stubborn Li three days before she said sorry.

“For a long time after that, if the boss said, ‘Go,’ I went because that’s what people do in China,” Li said after beating Russia’s Vera Zvonareva, 6-4, 7-5. “Now, I’m different. If the boss say, ‘Go,’ I don’t go. I don’t care what they say.”

Li, 25, is ranked No. 17 in the world and No. 1 in China. She has been a trailblazer for Chinese tennis: the first to win a WTA Tour event; the first to break into the top 30 in the rankings; the first to advance to the quarterfinals in a Grand Slam event.

She reached a career-high No. 16 last year after advancing to the quarterfinals at Wimbledon. This year, at the Australian Open, she lost in the quarterfinals to Martina Hingis.

Mary Joe Fernandez, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and an analyst for ESPN, said Li had the talent to break into the top 10, calling her a powerful player with one of the best two-handed backhands in the game. She said Li just needed more experience. “I’m not surprised she’s improving so fast, either,” Fernandez said, “because China is really pushing to have athletes ready for the Olympics.”

Li’s ability has given her personal freedom in a country that frowns on individuality. She is not forced to travel or eat with her compatriots on the WTA Tour. She has her own coach, who is also her husband, and a personal fitness coach.

If she practices with the national team, she said, she feigns an injury if she wants to take a break. Li, quick-witted and spunky, has figured out how to bend the rules. “Because I have potential in tennis, they let me do certain things,” she said. :lol:

Li is proud of her rebellious streak. She has multiple piercings on each ear, which she said angered her federation and national coaches.

“When I don’t play well, they say, ‘See, it’s because of the earrings!’ ” she said, giggling as her silver dangly earrings swished.

Li said she loved tennis because it had allowed her to see the world, an opportunity unavailable to most of her countrymen. But there was a time she thought differently.

Having played since she was 8, she grew sick of the sport by the time she was 20, quitting to enroll in a university. Two years later, she was coaxed back to her city team. Soon, she returned to the national team. That same year, 2004, she won her first WTA Tour event.

“She has been a great player since then,” Zvonareva said Wednesday. “Now I think the younger generation of Chinese players look up to her as a hero. All of tennis in China will get better because she gives them a reason to believe in themselves.”

Although Li is China’s best hope for a singles medal at the Beijing Olympics next year, she still must deal with criticism from her tennis federation, to which she gives a percentage of her winnings.

Officials have disapproved of what they call her hot temper, her hardheadedness and her love of shopping, which they say ruins her focus. (In a publicized shopping spree in Dubai last year, Li spent $3,000 on clothing and makeup.)

Last month, the China Tennis Association chief, Sun Jinfang, said that Li’s “weak mentality hampers her improvement." Sun has also called Chinese players “chokers.”

Still, Li showed incredible focus when she rebounded from a 5-1 deficit in the second set to beat Zvonareva. She saved three set points, not shaken by the heat or by Zvonareva, who the day before toppled the world’s No. 1, Maria Sharapova.

But even if she had not won, Li said, there would have been an upside: shopping in nearby Palm Springs.

“Before, I was told that shopping made my tennis bad,” she said. “But now the coach says you just play tennis and stay happy. They say, ‘If you want to go shopping, maybe you’d feel better and play better.’ I think so, too.”

Mar 15th, 2007, 04:49 PM
Time to look out for Li

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Wade Byars, The Desert Sun
Na Li of China returns to Vera Zvonareva of Russia on Wednesday during the Pacific Life Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Li won 6-4, 7-5.
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more pacific life open (http://www.thedesertsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?Category=EVENTS10)
Haas has no problem with Gonzalez (http://www.thedesertsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070315/EVENTS10/703150353/1002/sports)
Three-set matches good to Hantuchova (http://www.thedesertsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070315/EVENTS10/703150354/1002/sports)
Murray's game growing (http://www.thedesertsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070315/EVENTS10/703150355/1002/sports)
Ferrer doesn't fade (http://www.thedesertsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070315/EVENTS10/703150351/1002/sports)

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Larry Bohannan (http://www.thedesertsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/personalia?ID=1071)
The Desert Sun
March 15, 2007 March 15, 2007
INDIAN WELLS - Apparently, it's beat No. 1 and your done at the Pacific Life Open this week.

Vera Zvonareva knocked out No. 1 seed Maria Sharapova on Tuesday, only to suffer a second-set collapse in a 6-4, 7-5 quarterfinal loss to Li Na of China on Wednesday on the Stadium Court of the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
That's almost the exact path followed earlier this week by Guillermo Cañas in the men's draw of the tournament. Cañas beat No. 1 Roger Federer on Sunday, only to drop a straight-set match to Carlos Moya on Monday.
For Li, seeded 12th this week, the win put her in her second semifinal of the year. She lost in three sets to Kim Cjlisters in the semifinals in Sydney, Australia, earlier this year.
Li's second-set rally surprised not only the fans but some of the match officials.
"Funny, it was 4-1 I was down," Li said. "Then the chair umpire said, 'After the second set, you have 10 minutes for a break.' I said, 'Oh, OK.' Then I come to the court, and I feel, oh, the weather was not (hot). It's good for me."
Li won the first set Wednesday, taking advantage of errors both on the 17th-seeded Zvonareva's serve and her ground strokes. But Zvonareva looked like she would easily square the match when she took a 5-1 lead in the second set. The Russian's service problems continued, though, and that allowed Li to mount her comeback.
Li held serve to get to 2-5, then held off a set point to break Zvonareva to start the comeback in earnest. At 5-4, Zvonareva and Li engaged in a 14-point game, with Li holding off two set points before winning the game. Zvonareva double faulted twice in the game, part of a match that saw her hit on just 59 percent of her first serves.
Li said she was never too concerned on the set points against her.
OAS_AD('300x250_1');http://ad.doubleclick.net/ad/N1727.usa/B2102129.11;abr=!ie4;abr=!ie5;sz=300x250;ord=19423 26899? (http://www.wtaworld.com/)http://gcirm.thedesertsun.com/RealMedia/.ads/adstream_lx.ads/news.thedesertsun.com/sports/pacificlifeopen/index.html/1942326899/300x250_1/OasDefault/USAT-23018-Equifax-March1-15-300/equifax300x250.txt/34316431326161323435663831323130?_RM_EMPTY_
"I think, 'OK, I put the ball back.' And then if I put the ball back, I still have a chance to play this. If I lose the point, after 10 minutes, you come to the court, you don't know how you can play."

Squared at 5-5, Li won eight of the last 10 points in the match, including breaking Zvonareva at love in the final game.
Li's run in the Pacific Life Open this week should help her improve her world ranking of 12th in the world. But Li said she's not focusing on year-long goals or even the 2008 Beijing Olympics. "If I play this tournament, I will focus for this tournament," Li said. "If I play Miami, I focus for Miami."

Mar 15th, 2007, 06:26 PM
Interesting articles, thx to post them :)

Mar 15th, 2007, 11:00 PM
good article on Na


Mar 16th, 2007, 03:18 AM
good article on Na


Li Na rocks :rocker: a true pioneer :D

Mar 24th, 2007, 01:21 PM
I just saw this interview in GM from Na after her Indian Wells SF


THE MODERATOR: Questions for Na Li, please.

Q. It appeared that the break after the second set really changed your momentum and your game wasn't the same when you came back, especially because you'd been playing very well at the end of the second. Was it the heat or was it loss of momentum?
NA LI: You mean the final set?

Q. Final set, yes.
NA LI: I mean, you know, final set start, actually because I know I was a little bit tired. I just want to hit a lot of winner, because I didn't want play a lot in the court. I want to hit, like, one or two good shots and then finish the point. So but I miss a lot.
And after three games, I think, "Okay. All you can do." Nothing you do. Always miss. And then she never miss. She win all the points, yeah.

Q. How disappointing is it to lose the match on two double faults? Is it disappointing, the two double faults at the end?
NA LI: Yeah.

Q. Is it disappointing to lose that way?
NA LI: I don't want to put double fault to end in the match, but I don't know why. I can't serve in the court, yeah.

Q. She was taking a long time at the end between points.
NA LI: Mm-hmm.

Q. Did that bother you or is it okay?
NA LI: It's okay for me, yeah, because if I play, like, long point, I would like her, take a long time to break and then play the next point, yeah.

Q. I think you're the first Chinese to reach semifinal of a Tier I or a Grand Slam tournament. When you look back, do you feel it's been a positive tournament for you?
NA LI: Yeah, of course. You know, I was second time to play Indian Wells, so I got semifinals this year. If I play -- the next tournament, I go Miami, so more practice for me to play Miami or tournament, yeah.

Q. How did that heat affect you, because you had to take a break? Was it difficult to play in the heat?
NA LI: It's okay. Yeah, it's okay.

Q. But you took a break and then you came back and then --
NA LI: Yeah, I mean, on the ten-minute break, I think more time. Yeah, maybe just rest ten minutes and then come to court hot, because I think about the weather was hot, so the weather was more hot.

Q. So you felt more tired today?
NA LI: Yeah, I think, okay, I tired from my legs, so I think my legs was more heavy, yeah.

Q. What lessons do you think you learned about your tennis game from this match? What lessons will you take?
NA LI: What do you mean "lesson"?

Q. Learn. What did you learn from this match?
NA LI: Oh, okay. For me, I didn't control the point for this match. Because, I mean, I hit a lot of winner, but I have a lot of miss in the court. So I give opponent lot free points. So maybe she think, "Okay. If I serve to her, just I can win easy point, yeah."

Q. I didn't see the first set, end of the set, end of the second set. You didn't seem to have a coach there. Did you have a coach there with you today?
NA LI: Yeah, I have.

Q. Did he come out and talk to you after the first set?
NA LI: No, I didn't say for the coach, because I want to try for myself. I want to play myself, yeah. Because for this tournament, I didn't sign for the coach. But my coach was watch play every match, yeah.

Q. I think you were speaking to your husband or your coach in Chinese. What were you saying?
NA LI: I saw "Ha, always miss" (Laughing).

Q. Next time you're playing in such heat, maybe it would be a good idea not to think of the heat. You say I think the weather was hot, so the weather was more hot, so forget it.
NA LI: Yes, and if I play hot weather, I think, okay it's cold.

Q. What was the difference, do you think, between your serving in the second set and the third set, because you served a lot better in the second set?
NA LI: Yeah, because I say, because I come to court, I feel my legs was heavy, so I can't jump, hit big serve, yeah.

Q. During the break, did you drink a lot of water or what did you do during the ten-minute break?
NA LI: I was sitting in golf cart and drink a lot of Gatorade.

Q. Just one whole bottle?
NA LI: No, just small bottle, yeah.

Q. You're very close to making top 10. Do you think about that or not?
NA LI: I think every player, they want top 10, but you need -- I mean, you need hard work, play a good tournament. I mean, I would try to play good tournament. I try my best already. I lose the matches. Okay. I can play next one or I can come next year. So I will learn the -- how to get top 10.

Q. Is it difficult to come this close to making the final and then missing or more disappointing?
NA LI: Because now I lose, so I think, "Okay. If I win, I got final." So I can -- I will be -- come back for next year, yeah. I will try next year.

Q. When do you leave for Miami? Today? Tomorrow?
NA LI: I don't know. I didn't buy the flight ticket.

Q. You didn't buy the ticket?
NA LI: I want to go shopping for tomorrow and maybe leave after tomorrow.

Q. Where will you go shopping?
NA LI: They say there is outlet near here.

Q. The what?
NA LI: Outlet, outlet. A lot of Chinese girls, they go yesterday. So I said you shopping for that. So I want to go there.

Q. They make announcement in Chinese.
NA LI: Yeah?

Q. Announcement in the shopping center.
NA LI: Oh yeah? I didn't know that. Okay. I will see tomorrow.

Q. What are you going to buy?
NA LI: Everything, if I like it.

Q. Sounds like you're going to spend the day.
NA LI: Yeah, because, I mean, I play semifinal here, I want to buy some gift for myself, yeah, and play next tournament, yeah.

:lol: :bowdown:

May 30th, 2012, 07:12 PM
The National Reform and Development Commission has reportedly approved 330 million yuan ($52 million) for Hubei province to build the stadium.

According to an official from the Hubei Sports Bureau, the design of the stadium hasn't been finished yet. It was originally to be named the "Li Na Tennis Stadium" but later was changed to the "Li Na Comprehensive Stadium" to allow other sports.

The stadium will be completed within two years and hold 8,000 people.

- Hubei to build $52m Li Na stadium (http://europe.chinadaily.com.cn/sports/2012-05/29/content_15415595.htm), Updated: 2012-05-29 15:27, chinadaily.com

“I used to look at Serena Williams and Maria and I was like ‘Wow, they are stars’ because they both had huge big sponsors,” Li said. “I now have 12 sponsors after I won the French Open. Max was working hard.

- China’s Li Says No Pressure From $42 Million French Open Win (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-05-27/china-s-li-na-says-no-pressure-from-42-million-french-open-win.html), By Danielle Rossingh - May 28, 2012 8:52 AM MT, bloomberg.com