Everyone screamed and complained about the hard lockdown they endured after being on a flight with a COVID positive rider. "I'm more chilled. I didn't get riled up about the situation, because there's nothing we can do," Li calmly said to the media at Tennis.com.
The quarantine was brutal to the body and mind, but Ann Li is coming out fresh as a daisy flower. She's blooming with each match and who knows next what opponent will fall at her racket's strategies? She's used to making good of what she has and did just that with gym bikes brought into the hotel room and anything else she could exercise with.
The warm-up tournament at Melbourne Park had developed Ann Li into a solid round of play as she had gotten to the 'final' of the Grampians Trophy event. It was designed for players on the strict quarantine who weren't allowed out of their rooms for 14 days.
Li went through to the end and shared the last match trophy with Anett Kontaveit since organizers didn't want to have a stress-filled final round.
Arriving into the AO, Li was confident in doing great things
Ellen Perez was Li's first opponent, but she retired early with an injury.
Next was Veronika Kudermetova who led Li but the suspended match because of rain was a bonus for Li. She came back afterwards and won the match in straight sets. The 20-year-old's ranking is no. 69 and she was matche up with Jennifer Brady ranked in the top 30s.
It wasn't telling how the result would be but she scored a win in straight sets. It was Brady and her first meet and she tried to remain cool and calm. Li had kept to her game and remained steady but surprised at how her strategies were tearing into Brady's well-known polished game.
Li went the distance of a tough 3-setter to come out the winner. It was such a difference from last year's Australian Open when she met up with Sofia Kenin and fell in two straight sets. But that was then, and this is now.
The defeat of Brady gave Li more confidence and she floated into the second Melbourne round feeling more relaxed and justified on having a successful game against Zhang Shuai. The round was a powerful one for Li as she was able to move the no.
31 ranked Zhang around and found a comfortable position to score winners. Li was able to create her dominance over Zhang and defeated her in straight sets, with the last being a bagel in less than an hour. It's with each round that Ann Li is picking up momentum and waiting for her next opponent to test her ability on playing her best and hopefull winning in the process.