Melbourne – Victoria Azarenka overcame troubling injuries to end the fairytale run of American teenager Sloane Stephens on Thursday and advance to the Australian Open final against China's Li Na.
Last year's champion, despite the effects of injuries she appeared to sustain to her left knee and then her ribs, was relatively comfortable against the 19-year-old Stephens to run out a 6-1 6-4 winner.
Victoria Azarenka of Belarus. Credit: REUTERS
The 23-year-old Belarusian, however, will look forward to two days recovery before the final against Li, who had demolished Maria Sharapova earlier, after she appeared to sustain the injuries early in the second set.
Azarenka looked flustered for the rest of the match and her frustration level increased when Stephens saved five match points when the Belarussian was serving while leading 5-3, but she took her next opportunity on Stephens' next service game. – Reuters