Li cruises into quarters
Beijing - Chinese tennis star Li Na cruised through to the quarter-finals of the Shenzhen Open on Wednesday with a straight sets victory over American Julia Cohen.
The 2011 French Open singles winner and top seed took one hour and 34 minutes to defeat Cohen 6-3, 6-4.
The Chinese number one will face eighth seed Bojana Jovanovski, from Serbia, in the next round.
Li's compatriot Zhou Yimiao also powered through to the quarter-finals with a hard-fought 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 victory over Chang Kai-Chen from Taiwan.
She will face Romania's Monica Niculescu, who disposed of British teenager Laura Robson in their second-round match on Tuesday.
The Shenzhen Open - carrying total prize money of $500 000 - is being played for the first time as tennis expands in China on the back of Li's huge popularity.
Results on Wednesday from the Shenzhen Open, a WTA hard-court event at Longgang Tennis Center (seedings in parentheses):
Zhou Yi-Miao, China, def. Chang Kai-chen, Taiwan, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7/3).
Li Na (1), China, def. Julia Cohen, United States, 6-3, 6-4.
Marion Bartoli (2), France, def. Stefanie Voegele, Switzerland, 7-5, 6-4.