Hello and welcome to Melbourne for the 2014 Women's final between China's Li Na and Slovakian Dominika Cibulkova.
Well, well, well who saw this final coming at the start of the tournament?
I think most assumed we would be seeing Serena Williams take on either Victoria Azarenka or Maria Sharapova in the final. But it's not to be, and Na (4th seed) enters as the favourite tonight.
Will Cibulkova (20th seed) have plans to ruin the party, as she becomes the first Slovakian woman to play in a major final.
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Li Na 7, 6
Cibulkova 6, 0
Game Six (N): Two quick points for Li Na and the pressure builds on Cibulkova who plays a shot long to give up two match points opportunity. She saves the first. But not the second and Li Na wins the Women's Australian Open! Highlights up soon.
Game Five (N): Cibulkova goes up 0-30, but Li Na sweeps her to hold serve. Got to make the most of the chances, especially when you are down 4-0 at the time. This one looks all but over.
Game Four (N) : Na up a break, this is a big serve for Cibulkova as the new balls come out. Someone in the crowd yells out "bagel her" as Cibulkova looks to get on the scoreboard in the second set. Li Na forces the break point, and takes the game out. Double break and things are looking good for Na.
Game Three (N): Li Na starting to find her serve, blasting her quickest yet of 166km/h. Na gets out to a 40-0 lead, but Cibulkova brings it back with two points. Can't force deuce, and Na leads 3-0.
Game Two (N): Uh oh, that game didn't go to plan for Cibulkova. She is broken already and smacks away a ball in frustration. Na up 2-0.
Second set, Game One (N): Na to serve, she's still fiddling with her racquet. Cibulkova starts with two great returns for points. Na fines some form to come back from 0-30 down and hold her serve.
Twice a runner-up in Melbourne, is third time really the charm for Li Na?
Tie Break (N): Na takes a 2-0 lead in the tie break. But Cibulkova plays a great forehand to pull back a point. That seems to motivate Li Na and she goes out to a 5-2 lead, before taking the set.
Game Twelve (C): Na works Cibulkova along the baseline and the pocket rocket runs out of steam. Na is placing her shots well. Just as I say that, she botches a shot high and wide. Na loses her footing and then plays a shot into the net. Break point for Cibulkova. Na comes back with a great forehand and forces deuce. But it's the pocket rocket, and we head to the tie break!
Game Eleven (N):The rallies intensify as both players push and Na comes up with two break points. She forces the break at the right time and now serves for the first set.
Game Ten (N): Na pulls out a ace when she really needs one to tie things up at 5-5.
Game Nine (C): Na keeps checking her racquet, something about the strings appears to be bothering her but she takes Cibulkova to deuce after the Slovakian double-faults for the 5th time. She recovers to hold, and but herself in a good position to take the first set.
Game Eight (N): Na comes back to hold her serve. A crucial moment to stifle the pocket rocket.
Game Seven (C): Cibulkova getting into the groove. She takes the next game easily and the momentum has swung here.
Game Six (C): Cibulkova puts the pressure on Na in the first point. Na starts to crumble and double-faults giving Cibulkova two break points. But she doesn't need either as Na double-faults AGAIN. Game on!
Game Five (C): Just what the doctored order for Cibulkova, a stress-free hold. That will calm the nerves down, but she did double-fault again which is a concern.
Game Four (N): Na wins a point off her second serve, a quality that seems to be a difference between the two players. Comfortable hold for Na. Cibulkova will be disappointed not to challenge either receiving game yet.
Game Three (C): Cibulkova can't find her shot yet, spraying shots wide of the mark. She gets caught on a slow second serve and Na smacks back a forehand winner. A must hold for her and she catches Na who came to the net to force deuce. Cibulkova doesn't sit back, attacks, and manages to hold. She lets out some emotion after winning that one and holding.
Game Two (N): Na struggles with her first serve, but it doesn't matter when she plays her forehand so well. Na holds it fairly easily to take a 2-0 lead.
Game One (N): Na lets two drift long and takes a 0-30 lead. Na tries to loft one over her shorter opponent but it goes long. Cibulkova comes back, and we're heading to deuce in the first game. Cibulkova did well to claw this one back, but then double-faults and has been broken in the first game of the night. Uh oh, nerves kicking in already?!
Na wins the toss and has chosen to receive first. Cibulkova to serve.
Cibulkova is bouncing around keeping loose in the hallway. Li Na still hasn't appeared from her changing room yet
Presentation and national anthem out of the way, we're almost ready for some tennis as we wait on the players to take the court.
Who: Li Na v Dominika Cibulkova
Where: Melbourne Park
Odds: Na $1.35, Cibulkova $3.00
How Li Na made it to the final
R1: Ana Konjuh (Cro) 6-2 6-0
R2: Belinda Bencic (Swi) 6-0 7-6 (7-5)
R3: Lucie Safarova (Cze) 1-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-3
R4: Ekaterina Makarova (Rus) 6-2 6-0
QF: Flavia Pennetta (Ita) 6-2 6-2
SF: Eugenie Bouchard (Can) 6-2 6-4
How Dominika Cibulkova made it to the final
R1: Francesca Schiavone (Ita) 6-3 6-4
R2: Stefanie Voegele (Swi) 6-0 6-1
R3: Carla Suarez Navarro (Spa) 6-1 6-0
R4: Maria Sharapova (Rus) 3-6 6-4 6-1
QF: Simona Halep (Rom) 6-3 6-0
SF: Agnieszka Radwanska (Pol) 6-1 6-2
source: newshub archive