Why Li Na Will Never Win a Second Grand Slam Title

Jack JohnsonCorrespondent IOctober 29, 2011

ISTANBUL, TURKEY - OCTOBER 27:  Li Na of China reacts to a lost point while playing Victoria Azarenka of Belarus during round robin play of the TEB BNP Paribas WTA Championships Istanbul at the Sinan Erdem Dome on October 27, 2011 in Istanbul, Turkey.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

It was a glorious day for Chinese tennis when Li Na overcame Francesca Schiavone to win her maiden grand slam title in June.

In fact, it was an even better day for women's tennis, as it sparked whispers that perhaps they were going to have a new dominant force at the top. Considering Li Na's start to 2011, it wasn't a bad prediction.

The current World No. 5 won her very first tournament of the year, defeating Kim Clijsters in Sydney before losing out to the Belgian in the Australian Open final.

There were also semifinal appearances at Madrid and Rome before that win at Roland Garros.

However, in between those ventures to the latter stages of tournaments, the signs that Li Na might not be that dominant player the WTA was screaming out for were starting to break through.

Even before the French Open, she suffered early exits at Dubai, Doha, Miami and Indian Wells. In fact, this collated to four straight defeats, making her recovery for the clay court season and her eventual success in Paris rather remarkable.

Or perhaps it was just a one-off. Her form after the French Open certainly suggests that.

Second-round losses at Eastbourne, Toronto and Cincinnati, and most recently a first-round exit at Beijing, meant that all the talk about Li Na was suddenly drying up. Not to mention her poor performances at Wimbledon and the US Open.

Li Na seems to have lost all her confidence and could do nothing to prevent Sam Stosur and Victoria Azarenka cruising to victories at the WTA Championships.

There will be no second grand slam title for Li Na. All the brilliance that was shown at Roland Garros has been hidden away. Her confidence is blown and there seems to be no answer.

Li Na is sadly not the tennis player the WTA continues to crave.