'Champion' Azarenka says expected worse boos from crowds during Oz Open final
Victoria Azarenka has claimed she expected even worse boos from the crowd during her win in the Australian Open final against Li Na after coming through a controversial build-up to the match.
The world number one prevailed 4-6 6-4 6-3 in two hours and 40 minutes to win her second Grand Slam title, the BBC reports.
Azarenka had been accused of gamesmanship in some quarters after taking a medical timeout late in her semi-final against Sloane Stephens, the paper further reports.
The issue led to a media grilling and the 23-year-old went on a round of interviews before the final to get across her side of the story that the timeout had been purely for medical reasons.
Azarenka said it wasn't easy for her heading into the final but she knew how to deal with it.
The Belarusian further said she knew she had to stay calm and positive, dealing with the things that came to her.
Azarenka added she was delighted because she managed to produce her best tennis despite going through so many things.
With the issue featuring heavily in local newspapers and sports bulletins, and up against the popular Li, it was no surprise that the majority of the crowd were supporting her opponent.
Azarenka claimed she expected even more hostile response from the crowd, adding that she can't really do much, but she has kept the whole controversy behind her.