Li Na is finding ways to make it to finals in 2012, but up to now has not been able to close the show with a title win. Once again, she has reached another final at the 2012 Western & Southern Open. To be fair, the opponents she has faced this year in those final losses aren’t chopped liver. Quite the opposite: Victoria Azarenka, Maria Sharapova and Petra Kvitova. After a see-saw 7-5 3-6 6-1 win over Venus Williams, she will get Angelique Kerber in the final. Although I really don’t like to be negative about players or the press, concerning the announcing during the semifinals, the booth sounded more like cheerleaders for Venus than objective observers. Every time Venus did something great, she had wonderful heart, they would say. When Li Na was dominant, Venus has physical ailments. Granted, she was fighting a bad back and was serving in the 70s during a large part of the match. However, Li Na has beaten Venus every time they’ve played and the momentum swings were very typical of Li Na matches. She came out strong, fighting her way to a 7-5 2-1 lead. After an injury time-out by Venus, Li Na couldn’t find the court for the rest of the 2nd set. Then she regrouped and finished Venus off in the 3rd set. That’s pretty much a microcosm of Li Na’s game. Alternately brilliant or awful. Often in the same match. And like I mentioned, she is 3-0 against Venus. Yet to listen to the booth, it was all Venus. Yes, Venus’ back troubles played a part, but so did Li Na’s shotmaking. Anyway, enough of that. Back to being positive. Li Na moves on to the final, so it doesn’t matter if they gave her due respect during the match or not.
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