Li Na Wins French Open, Becomes First Asian-Born Player to Win Grand Slam
Few people expected China's Li Na, 29, to make it to the final of the Australian Open earlier this year, but she's silenced her doubters for good with a tenacious fight to her second-straight grand slam final at the French Open, where she beat defending champion Francesca Schiavone. Hailing from Wuhan, China, Li came into the tournament ranked 7th in the world, defeating three top-10 ranked players en route to the final, including Petra Kvitova, Victoria Azarenka and golden-girl Maria Sharapova. Despite losing to Clijsters in the Australian Open in January, Li took home the trophy this weekend, defeating Schiavone in 2 sets (6-4, 7-6) making her the first Asian-born player to win a Grand Slam singles title.Li's weapons are not only her penetrating groundstrokes, but her unwillingness to give a fight no matter who stands opposite her across the net. In addition to her amazing displays on court, she has captured the hearts of tennis fans around the world with her charming sense of humor and humbleness.
"Today is the dream come true. I was a young player, I want to be the Grand Slam champion. Now, the old woman, the dream come true, not easy," said Li to the press. [via CBS News]
Photo: AP Photo/Michel Euler