Sharapova beats Li Na to win Porsche GP againThe Associated PRess | April 29,2013AP Photo
Maria Sharapova reacts after locking up Sunday’s win over Li Na to defend her Porsche Grand Prix title in Germany.STUTTGART, Germany — Maria Sharapova beat Li Na 6-4, 6-3 on Sunday to successfully defend her WTA Porsche Grand Prix title in a final between the last two French Open champions.
The top-seeded Russian swept to her second title of the year after winning in Indian Wells, Calif. She became the first player to retain the Stuttgart title since Lindsey Davenport in 2005.
“I thought it’d be the toughest match of the tournament, but I played my best tennis today,” Sharapova said. “I was able to step it up.”
This was her 29th career title and 16th consecutive win on clay, dating to Rome last year. Since Stuttgart last year, she is 23-1 on clay. Her only loss was to Serena Williams in Madrid.
Sharapova, ranked No. 2, was using the Stuttgart tournament for her clay-court debut this season, as she did last year when she went on to capture the French Open.
The second-seeded Li had a double-fault on match point, with another one earlier in the final game.
“I was under pressure on her return,” Li said. “She was aggressive.”
Sharapova had to fight through three long three-setters to get to the championship match, but there was little drama in the final.
The Russian opened with a break and went up 4-1 before Li could pull back one break. But that was not enough, and Sharapova closed the set with a service winner.
“I tried to put it together from the start,” Sharapova said.
Li, who became the first Chinese player to win a Grand Slam title with her victory at Roland Garros in 2011, simply didn’t have enough consistency to threaten. Sharapova gained the key break in the seventh game of the second when Li sent a volley wide.
Sharapova holds a 9-5 career edge over Li, who beat her in the semifinals of the Australian Open, the year’s first Grand Slam.
“I’m a little sad to lose,” Li said. “But it’s a pretty good start to my clay-court season.”MORE IN Wire SportsTORONTO — Armed with his best curveball of the season, Toronto Blue Jays left-hander J.A. Full StoryATLANTA — Jacob Turner allowed two runs in his bid for a permanent return to Miami’s rotation and... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- TODAY'S WEATHER MINUTE: Rutland Herald content editor Rich Alcott shares local weather information and easily digestible news tidbits: America's feet getting bigger than ever, and Americans keep jamming their feet into small sized shoes. Wake up, America!
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: Vanessa Williams resigns from Miss America pageant after Bob Guccione publishes nude photos of her in Penthouse magazine and Hefner takes the high road; on this day in 1995, Alan Hale and Thomas Bopp discover a new comet.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Brandon voters decide fate of proposed budget, calls to police for service on complaints have fallen to new low, city woman who spray painted a response to vandals on her sidewalk is cited for mischief.
- TODAY'S WEATHER MINUTE: Rutland Herald content editor Rich Alcott shares local weather information and easily digestible news tidbits: When all the big mammals are rubbed out and a faint geologic memory, rats the size of human beings will stalk the Earth.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: National survey ranks Vermont kids' well-being in second place, Springfield takes up anti-loitering ordinance, Rutland debate taxis, Fair Haven woman is arrested in Rutland for prostitution.
- TODAY'S WEATHER MINUTE: Rutland Herald content editor Rich Alcott shares local weather and news: Research scientists say schizophrenia and marijuana use linked. Are marijuana smokers schizophrenic or are schizophrenics more disposed toward marijuana use?