Maria Sharapova claimed her second consecutive Stuttgart crown in defeating China’s Li Na at the Porsche Open.
The World Number 2 won in straight sets 6-4 6-3. It was the only match of the tournament where she hadn’t been stretched to a deciding final set.
Sharapova exerted a lot of pressure on the Li Na service game, with quality agressive returning. This paid dividends as she broke Li twice in the first set. She was broken back once, but it was a temporary repreive for Li and the russian closed out the set.
Sharapova serving well and returning even better, wrapped things up in a comfortable second set with Li Na double faulting on match point.
“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.”
The second-seeded Li had a double-fault on match point
Sharapova now improves to 9-5 over Li in their personal head to head matchup and is confidently building momentum during the European clay court swing, where the main focus will be to defend her Roland Garros title in Paris.