Kvitova, Halep breeze into quarters in windy Dubai

Second seed Kvitova lost the opening set to Katerina Siniakova before staging a recovery to win 6-7 (3-7) 6-4 6-4.

She was the dominant figure against the German in the decider and it was the other way around today, beating Pliskova 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 in two hours but only after trailing 5-1 in set number three!

Crowd favourite and third seed Halep, supported even in the middle of a workday by scores of chanting, enthusiastic local Romanian fans, beat Lesia Tsurenko of the Ukraine 6-3, 7-5, breaking seven times from 10 chances. Could the current world No8 make it a hat-trick in the desert, after the disappointment of letting a 4-1 lead slip in her three-set loss to Halep in Doha last week?

The 28-year-old saved six of nine break points and converted three of 11 to advance to a quarter-final against Viktoria Kuzmova after the Slovakian world No. 46 rallied from a bad start to defeat Sofia Kenin of the USA 1-6, 7-5, 6-2 in 2 hours, 16 minutes.

After the victory, Hsieh will move on to the quarter finals where she will face Czech tennis player, Karolina Pliskova, who is ranked number 5 globally. "I say to myself, 'Okay, if she (does) not ace me, I hit the ball so much harder than before, then she can not hit a victor'".

"I'm still a little angry about it as I felt I was playing really good and I was playing good shots during the game", Jabeur said. Taiwan's Hsieh Su-Wei in action during the match against Japan's Naomi Osaka.

"Everyone thinks it was a money-related issue, but it wasn't", she said.

Osaka looked a shadow of her usual self as she was beaten in her first match since the Australian Open.

It was Hsieh's first victory over a top-10 player since stunning then-world No. 1 Halep at Wimbledon a year ago.

"I hope more Asian players can do well and take the level of tennis a bit higher". I don't want to put any pressure on myself.

Playing her first match since claiming the No. 1 ranking with her Australian Open triumph, the Japanese 21-year-old capitulated in just over an hour, having won less than half of her first serve points while making 25 unforced errors. I feel that my game is pretty strong.

Osaka wiped away tears as she spoke of the challenge of adjusting to her new celebrity.

"I just need to try to play my game and be happy on the court, be positive", Hsieh said.

"It means a lot, honestly", Mladenovic said after booking a match with a Spain's Carla Suarez Navarro in the last 16.

  • Rosalie Stanley