Playing against defending champion Li Na in the final of the Apia International Sydney, Victoria Azarenka dominated the first set 6-2 before Li stormed through the second without facing a break point and by losing just one game. The odds continued to be on Li’s side in the beginning of the third set when she broke Azarenka’s serve in the opening game, but from then on Azarenka was writing the story of their match and took out the last year’s champion 6-2 1-6 6-3.
By defeating Stefanie Voegele, Jelena Jankovic, eighth seed Marion Bartoli, seventh seed Agnieszka Radwanska and finally Li, world No.3 Azarenka earned her ninth career title and her second in Australia, after Brisbane 2009. The Sydney winner’s prize is $107,000.
Li can also leave the tournament satisfied. She’s had her best strech of match wins since the French Open. In addition, the Sydney final and her 22-4 win-loss record in Australia over the last three years can only suggest we can expect the best of Li at the upcoming Australian Open where she was runner-up last year.
A great week for Vika! It wasn’t a final of the highest quality, but it was an intriguing and competitive contest as many of the matches were in Sydney this week. Azarenka has a good draw at next week’s Australian Open and I think she will at least, reach her first Grand Slam final, perhaps more!
I was rooting for Li, but I hope she goes on to do well in Melbourne, though she has got a tough draw in the form of a projected 4th round meeting with Clijsters. If she manages to get past Clijsters, she will make it to semis, where a projected clash with Azarenka awaits. I hope Li can win title this year…
Great win for Vika…she will be force for the AO next week.Li played well though 🙂
My pick for number 1 in 2012, Victoria is starting off strong!!!!