Slovan Bratislava was looking for its first triumph of the season on home ice, but a meager 22 shots and a single goal scored were not going to cut it.
Li felt a bit uncomfortable about Shandong's double team early in the match, but soon get used to that, making two baskets and feeding Chen's two layups, to help Inner Mongolia race ahead 19-15 in the first quarter.
"Now we can play matches. Even without fans on site, we can feel satisfied back on court, so I cherish it pretty much," she noted.
"We played very well today. It was a lot of fun. I would preferably play another game straight away," Leipzig's Emil Forsberg said.
With several different players contributing in offense, Jiangsu went on another 16-3 run to start the second quarter to extend its advantage to almost 30 points, which gave little room for Shaanxi's fightback. Shaanxi came no closer than 14 points during the entire second half.
The arrival of the national quartet of Li, Yang Liwei, Huang Sijing and Li Yuan meant Inner Mongolia, playing in the WCBA for the second year, emerged as a rising powerhouse.
"It's because I did a lot of things well. I played more aggressively than the previous days. I went to the net more often, and I hit a lot of winners," added the 12-time French Open champion, who needed only one hour and 35 minutes to see off his opponent.
Jiangsu showed its well-balanced, attacking firepower, with seven players scoring in double figures, led by Sun Li's 18.
Temwa Chawinga gave Wuhan a 1-0 lead in the 10th minute as she received a pass and rifled an effort into the net. Shanghai leveled the game in the 13th minute as Banda stole the ball from a Wuhan defender in the penalty area and slotted it past the goalkeeper. Just one minute later, Shen Mengyu's goal, from an assist from Banda, helped Shanghai gain a 2-1 lead.
The 2018 champion lost to Anisimova in the quarterfinals in Paris last year, but this time the Romanian needed only 54 minutes to complete a convincing victory.
"He is now playing more regularly and doesn't have any injury concerns which bodes well for us."