Taiwanese player stuns ex-No. 1 to reach Dubai tennis quarterfinals

WTA Dubai Simona Halep Petra Kvitova and Garbine Muguruza reach R3

A day after Naomi Osaka lost her first match since moving up to No. 1 in the WTA rankings, fifth-seeded Angelique Kerber was also upset in a 5-7,6-4,6-0 loss to Hsieh Su-Wei of Taiwan.

Belinda Bencic survived six match points on her way to shocking No 8 seed Arnya Sabalenka at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Wednesday night.

World number 2 and Dubai Duty Free Ambassador, Simona Halep treated herself this week ahead of her first game at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships with a quick shopping spree at the Dubai Duty Free shop in Terminal 3, Concourse B.

The last quarter-final sees 2013 champion Kvitova face Kuzmova, the pair both needing three sets to see off Jennifer Brady and Sofia Kenin respectively.

Pliskova had reached at least the semi-final at her previous three Tour events, dating to the Singapore ATP Finals last October. "I felt more relaxed in the final set, so I gained the match pretty well". "I think there should be more (Asian) girls looking at her and trying to work super hard".

The Romanian who is now without a coach, was more than pleased with her strong sprint finish to a match which lasted one hour, 20 minutes. After a 10th double-fault on her first match point, Kvitova sealed the win with a victor at the net.

"I feel close to my highest level", Halep told a media conference after the win.

"Definitely it's a relief right now".

"But I'm happy I was able to get two wins".

"And because a year ago I wasn't even anywhere close to this ranking and people didn't pay attention to me and that's something that I'm comfortable with".

"The wind was just bad today, to be honest", said Kvitova after reaching at least the quarter-finals for the fourth successive tournament. "It's great when you're not playing your best and you still find a way to win".

Playing a second-round match after an opening bye as the tournament's top seed, Osaka won only 5 of 27 second-serve points, just 19 per cent, and barely half of her first-serve points, 12 of 22. I feel that my game is pretty strong, also physically, even if I'm exhausted a little bit.

Defending champion Elina Svitolina charged through to the quarter-finals of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship with a dominant victory over Garbine Muguruza.

The Romanian was opposed with Lesya Tsurenako for the 6th time in her career, and the world no.2 was already enjoying a strong 5-0 record against the Ukrainian.

"Second set I was slowing down a little bit, so it's not a good sign", said Hsieh. "In the final set, I did little bit more", the world number 31 said after booking a place in the quarterfinals.

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