“I love being here,” she said. “I wanted to play Monday.”
Williams’ next opponent will be No. 10 Dominika Cibulkova, who beat No. 22 Alice Cornet 7-6 (6), 6-1. No. 11 Caroline Wozniacki lost only five points in the second set and beat No. 17 Sloane Stephens 6-1, 6-0.
Li Na overcame three set points to overtake American Madison Keys 7-6 (3), 6-3. The No. 2-seeded Li, the reigning Australian Open champion, won even though she had seven double-faults and was broken four times.
Keys failed to convert her set points serving at 5-3 in the first set. She also squandered a lead in the second set, when three times she was within a point of going up 3-love against Li.
“She’s No. 2 in the world for a reason,” Keys said. “She just won Australian Open for a reason. She’s a great player. I played well at times, and she just played the bigger points really, really well.”
Monday’s schedule includes six-time champion Serena Williams against fellow American CoCo Vandeweghe, who rallied past Samantha Stosur 5-7, 7-5, 7-5 in a match that ended at 2:29 a.m. Sunday.