Watching Roger Federer lift the men’s singles title at the Western and Southern Open inspired the Chinese player, Li Na to go out and win the ladies event just a few hours later.
"I was thinking, `OK, I really want to do the same,''' she said, having seen Roger Federer posing for photographs and lifting the trophy after beating Novak Djokovic to win the Cincinnati masters title.
This has been a long season for Li Na who, despite reaching three finals had yet to win a trophy up until yesterday and her Tennis Odds before the tournament did not suggest imminent success.
“I was really hungry for the title,'' she added after defeating Germany's Angelique Kerber in three sets.
Maybe it was due to nerves, but Li started the match in the worst possible fashion, losing the first set 6-1, and she must have thought that her winless streak was bound to continue.
To her credit, though, the 30-year old fought back heroically and was a worthy winner;“She was playing unbelievable in the first set,'' Li said. "I was trying to play fast, but I was feeling she had no mistakes. Every ball just came back to my side” she added.
Prior to yesterday the last tournament that Li Na won was the French Open in 2011 and, having proved in the past that she is capable of winning Grand Slams, her victory in Cincinnati will certainly give her a huge confidence boost going into the US open next week; "I think it's a very good beginning,'' she said.
Li Na’s previous best performance at the US Open was a Quarter final appearance in 2009 and, having returned to winning ways her US Open Tennis Odds have moved in. She will be expecting to at least match that at Flushing Meadows this time around.