Defending champion Li edges American McHale

Defending champion Li Na needed three sets to stop American

Christina McHale at the French Open on Saturday.

The seventh-seeded Li, who last year became the first Chinese

player to win a Grand Slam singles title, rallied to beat McHale

3-6, 6-2, 6-1.

Li committed 44 unforced errors in the match, 20 more than her

unseeded opponent.

The last woman to successfully defend her title at Roland Garros

was Justine Henin, who won three straight from 2005-07.