Slovakia’s Daniela Hantuchova and Julia Goerges, of Germany, booked themselves a quarter-final clash at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships with respective second-round successes.
Hantuchova comfortably defeated China’s Shuai Peng 7-5, 6-2, while Goerges made the most of number one seed Victoria Azarenka’s earlier withdrawal to trounce Australian lucky loser Casey Dellacqua 6-0, 6-2 in just 44 minutes.Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic also booked her last-eight place at the expense of Russia’s Maria Kirilenko with a 6-2, 7-6 (4) win in a match that contained no less than 10 service breaks in 21 games overall. She’ll encounter either Danish third seed Caroline Wozniacki or qualifier Simona Halep, of Romania, next up.
Meanwhile, Australia’s Samantha Stosur came through a three-set battle against Lucie Safarova, of the Czech Republic, 6-1, 6-7 (5), 6-1; the 2011 US Open champion easily taking the first and third sets with two breaks in each, with the second-set tie-break going in Safarova’s favour after 12 successive service holds.“Lucie can be a very dangerous player and has got a big game. When she puts it all together, it’s hard to play against,” the Brisbane-born 27-year-old said.
“I served really well and, with that second set – although I lost it – I don’t think I really did that much wrong. “I had a few opportunities to try and break late in the second set and wasn’t able to take them, but then finally did early in the third.”Stosur will now meet eighth-seeded Serbian Jelena Jankovic, who beat Flavia Pennetta, of Italy, in straight sets 6-4, 6-2.Jankovic trailed 3-1 early on in the first set as Pennetta broke her serve in the fourth game, but ‘JJ’ hit back with four consecutive games – including two breaks – to lead at 5-3.
Respective holds from there then saw Jankovic take the first set and the second was determined by two three-game bursts by Jankovic at 0-0 and 3-2 either side on a mini-break back from Pennetta.“It wasn’t an easy match at all. There were some really tight games and it could have been either way,” the 2010 French Open semi-finalist, 26, said. “I hung in there. I was down a break at the beginning of the first set and then I lifted my game, started playing a lot more aggressively and controlling the points a lot better.
“I served a lot better than her as well. I was holding my service games and waiting for the opportunities to break her.“I did that, won the first set and kept going in the second. Overall, I played pretty well. I was fighting well and had a good match. “I’m happy with the win. Flavia is a great player, so it wasn’t easy to beat her.”Germany’s Sabine Lisicki – an easy 6-3, 6-3 victor over Czech qualifier Iveta Benesova – faces fifth-seeded Pole Agnieszka Radwanska, who downed Shahar Peer, of Israel, 7-5, 6-4.