18-time Grand Slam champion Chris Evert recently discussed Chinese No. 1 Li Na’s Grand Slam win, admitting that it was an awe-inspiring victory for a player over 30 years of age.
“Yes. Even since this time last year, she’s worked on coming in, she’s worked on her serve, if you notice her serve, she’s torquing, she’s throwing the ball higher and using more legs.” Evert told The Tennis Space. “I think her serve and coming to the net are the two things she’s worked on. It’s great, over 30, she’s still working on improving her game, I think it’s very inspiring.”
Evert, who is a commentator for ESPN and was covering the 2014 Australian Open final where Li Na won her second Grand Slam title, also stated that she has no trouble presenting Li to the viewing audience, as her story, dating back to her days in China when she stood up to the government to be allowed to play international tennis, is one of the best on the entire WTA tour.
“I love when I am calling her matches, because I could spend an hour telling her story, about being in China, about standing up to the Chinese tennis federation, about her tattoos, her whole upbringing. The really interesting thing when I read about her past is that she said her coaching in China was all negative. She didn’t get one compliment. That’s what Carlos Rodriguez has had to work on, really, getting her to be loving to herself and kinder to herself. But her story, I don’t know if anyone could stand up to a Communist government, how many people are bold enough to do that?”