March 4, 2021

Svitolina sets quarters date with Azarenka as Muguruza beats Sabalenka

Top seed Elina Svitolina on Wednesday set a quarterfinals date with eighth seed Victoria Azarenka after she beat Misaki Doi of Japan in straight sets in a Round of 16 clash. Svitolina, from Ukraine, won 6-1, 6-2 in 1 hour 5 minutes. The world number five will now play Azarenka who on Wednesday beat Germany’s Laura Siegemund 6-4, 6-2 in 1 hour and 55 minutes.

In an earlier match on Wednesday, Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit proved too strong for former world number one Angelique Kerber of Germany to reach the quarterfinals. Kontaveit completed a 6-1, 6-4 win in exactly one hour of aggressive tennis. It was 25-year-old Estonian’s fourth win over the German in five meetings.

Maintaining the order for top players in the field, fourth seed Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic delivered a flawless performance to beat Anatasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia. Pavlyuchenkova, who had earned two wins over top-10 players this year, could not do much against her experience rival. Kvitova won 6-1, 6-3 for her 9th career win over the Russian. Kvitova will now play Kontaveit in the quarterfinals.

“I feel great to be back here and playing in front of these fans. I think we are lucky to be playing and enjoying in these tough times. We have played each other many times since I have been on Tour. I am just glad to be here,” Kvitova said. “It is always challenging to be playing against her. I just did well today.”

Also on Wednesday, Jessica Pegula of the United States beat former champion Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia in straight sets. Pegula won 6-2, 7-5 in 1 hour and 18 minutes. In a fighting display, Greece’s Maria Sakkari on Wednesday beat Madison Keys of the United States. Sakkari, aged 25, won 6-2, 6-2. On Thursday, Pegula will meet Karolina Pliskova who beat Ons Jabeur of Tunisia 6-4, 4-6, 7-5.

In the quarterfinals on Thursday, Sakkari will meet Spain’s Garbine Muguruza who beat defending champion and third seed Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus. Two-time Grand Slam champion Muguruza won 6-2, 6-7, 6-3