Li began her clay-court season pretty impressively with a run to the Stuttgart final last month but then she suffered her first disappointing result of an impressive 2013 season to date, crashing out in the first round of Madrid last week to Madison Keys. Li had been expecting to face Tamira Paszek and so she was a little taken aback to find that Paszek had withdrawn and she had a new opponent, just before going on court. However her tennis was still dreadful as she sprayed unforced errors all over the court and Keys took her chance admirably well.
She'll be hoping for better this week. She had a decent chance to make the last four with Agnieszka Radwanska (the top seed in her section) crashing out in round two. However she'll have to make sure she doesn't suffer a similar fate and this is a tricky opener.
Zheng is a very underrated player. She was the first of the Chinese stars to make a big breakthrough, reaching the semis of Wimbledon and the Australian Open a few years back. Like Li she's a very flat hitter but she doesn't possess quite the same power.
Nevertheless she played well to see off Magdalena Rybarikova 7-6(0), 6-3 in the opening round and she leads the head-to-head 4-1, although they have only played once since 2006, a match Li won in straight sets in Indian Wells last year.