Sports

Dubai C’ships: Kvitova, Halep win

Dubai, Feb 20 (Agencies): | Publish Date: 2/21/2019 12:00:00 AM IST

Former titleholders Petra Kvitova and Simona Halep battled through brisk desert winds to advance into the quarter-finals of the Dubai Championships on Wednesday.

Second seed Kvitova, now the highest ranked player remaining in the field after the surprise elimination of Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka, outlasted American qualifier Jennifer Brady 7-5, 1-6, 6-3.

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.

The challenger managed just a single point over the last three games as former number one Halep demonstrated her superiority by winning her seventh in the series without a loss.

Slovak Viktoria Kuzmova reached a 2019 last-eight place for the second time this season after Auckland through a 1-6, 7-5, 6-2 defeat of American Sofia Kenin.

Kvitova, who won the Dubai trophy in 2013, admitted that she came into the week somewhat unprepared, last playing on the WTA in a St Petersburg quarter-final a fortnight ago. The gusty conditions were testing inside the stadium at the Aviation Club which 2015 Dubai holder Halep managed to control as she rolled over Tsurenko.

The Romanian who is currently without a coach, was more than pleased with her strong sprint finish to a match which lasted one hour, 20 minutes.

 

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