WTA Sony Open Tennis: Serena Williams beats Li Na to claim seventh Miami title
Serena Williams won her seventh Miami title after a 7-5 6-1 victory over Li Na in the final of the Sony Open Tennis.
Last Updated: 29/03/14 8:42pm
In a battle between the top two players in the world, Williams battled past the Australian Open champion in just under two hours at Crandon Park.
With the victory Williams, who lives an hour's drive from the tournament venue, improved her head-to-head record against world No 2 Li to 11-1.
Williams had to recover from a slow start, however, the American going 4-2 down to her Chinese opponent in the opening set.
During the seventh game Williams saved three break points but still went a double-break behind after surrendering her serve on a double fault.
But the 17-time grand slam champion finally sparked into life and reeled off five games in a row to win the first set.
She did have to save a set point in the 10th game and went to deuce six times before finally breaking Li's serve in the final game of the set.
Williams' serve improved as the match wore on and in the second set she was offering precious few opportunities to the second seed.
The defending champion raced into a 5-1 lead thanks to two breaks of serve and wrapped up the contest by taking her fifth match point.
"It was a really important victory, especially playing Li Na, who has been playing so well," Williams told the WTA's official website.
"She started out so well - I was like, 'oh my gosh, I just need to hang in here'. Then I heard some fans trying to pull me through - if it hadn't been for you guys I wouldn't be standing here right now."
Li added: "I have to say well done to Serena - you had a very good two weeks here. Keeping healthy is the most important thing for me, and just trying to do the best I can.
"Of course I want to thank my team as well."