WUHAN, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- Chinese tennis star Li Na played her strangest match ever against the Ukrainian Elina Svitolina on a floating tennis court in East Lake in her hometown of Wuhan on Saturday.
This forms part of promotional activities ahead of the Wuhan Open which kicks off this weekend.
The floating tennis court covered an area of only about 200 square meters compared to the 670 square meters of a standard tennis court. After a short warm up, Li and Svitolina started their match.
"I was a little dizzy and lost direction on the water," Li said. "I have just experienced the most difficult match." Even though the two are both top tennis players, they still needed some time to adjust to the court.
As the ambassador for the Wuhan Open, Li has been sparing no effort in promoting tennis in her hometown. Since her retirement, she has been preparing her own tennis school. Although she found it was more difficult than she expected, she says she will never give up.
"I really care a lot about young players. When I was young, I worked very hard. And I used to think, if I wanted to win, what should I do? Then my answer is, if you want to win, you must work really really hard," Li said, adding that playing a match is more about challenging yourself.
To promote tennis, Li invited her friend Svitolina, who has won 12 WTA tournaments. Their match on water was a success, attracting lots of visitors, and the live broadcast attracted over 1 million views.
During the Wuhan Open last year, Li and Sania Mirza played tennis in front of the Wuhan Art Museum. She also learned how to make hot dry noodles in Jiqing Street, an example of old Hankou lifestyle.
With the help of tennis, Wuhan has expanded its influence. Now the whole world is witnessing its rapid development. After this on-the-water match, Svitolina will continue to compete against top 10 players from around the world, including Simona Halep, Caroline Wozniacki and Angelique Kerber.
The Wuhan Open is one of the most important female tennis tournaments. This year's Wuhan Open runs 金沙彩票from Sept. 23-29.