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China's Li pulls upset

The Associated Press
Published:   |   Updated: March 13, 2013 at 10:30 AM
MELBOURNE, Australia -

China's Li Na overpowered second-seeded Maria Sharapova 6-2, 6-2 early today to advance to the Australian Open final and a chance for her second Grand Slam title.

Li, who won the 2011 French Open and was the losing finalist here to Kim Clijsters the same year, broke Sharapova's serve in the fifth and seventh games of the second set. Sharapova had dropped only nine games in five matches en route to the semifinals, a tournament record.

The sixth-seeded Li will play either defending champion Victoria Azarenka or 19-year-old American Sloane Stephens in Saturday night's final. Stephens shocked favorite Serena Williams in three sets to reach her first Grand Slam semifinal.

Federer, who broke Tsonga in the fourth game of the deciding set, converted his fifth match point while serving after Tsonga saved four match points in the previous game. Federer, who advanced to the semifinals for the 10th consecutive year at Melbourne Park, will play U.S. Open champion Andy Murray on Friday.

Murray beat Jeremy Chardy 6-4, 6-1, 6-2. The other men's semifinal has defending champion Novak Djokovic playing David Ferrer.

The 25-year-old Murray had his service broken for only the second time while serving for the match. But he broke back immediately to clinch a quarterfinal victory.

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