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World news – UA – Zhang emulates Li Na at Roland Garros despite visa fight

Zhang emulates Li Na at Roland Garros despite visa fight

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Zhang Shuai on Saturday became the first Chinese woman to reach the last 16 places at Roland Garros since former champion Li Na in 2012, though a visa feud nearly forced her to skip the tournament

Zhang defeated French wildcard and world number 357 Clara Burel 7-6 (7/2), 7-5 and will then face seventh seed Czech Petra Kvitova or 18-year-old Canadian Leylah Fernandez

Zhang, 39th, admitted, however, that her participation in Paris was in doubt after a long wait for a visa to allow her to travel from New York, where she had competed in the US Open, to Europe

His visa was finally granted on the Friday before the start of the clay court event in Rome

« I get a passport from the embassy, ​​we buy the tickets afterwards and we fly to Rome We have to quarantine 24 hours, then I only practice one hour So the next day we start playing the game »

Unsurprisingly, Zhang lost his first match in Rome but was supported by qualifying for the quarter-finals in Strasbourg on the eve of Roland Garros, beating Burel on the way

She made the quarter-finals twice – as a qualifier at the 2016 Australian Open ahead of a second round of the last eight at Wimbledon last year

Zhang, the only Chinese in the draw in Paris this year, has already enjoyed Grand Slam success, winning the Australian Open doubles title with Sam Stosur last year

It was a stark contrast to her mood in late 2015 when she was considering retiring from the sport

« It’s always difficult on clay for Chinese and Asian players because we play better on faster courts, » said Zhang

Li Na, French Open, Zhang Shuai

News from the world – UA – Zhang emulates Li Na at Roland Garros despite the fight for visas – France 24


SOURCE: https://www.w24news.com

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