Women’s singles second seed Maria Sharapova sealed a convincing straight sets win to book her quarter-final place against Eugenie Bouchard in the Australian Open on Sunday.
Sharapova was too hot for China’s 21th-seed Pen Shuai, claiming a resounding 6-3 6-0 win and will now look on to the rematch of last year’s French Open quarter-finals meeting with Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard, after the 7th-seed recovered from a 2nd set blip to beat Irina-Carmelia Begu 6-1 5-7 6-2.
Spanish third seed Rafael Nadal dominated South Africa’s Kevin Anderson 7-5 6-1 6-4 to seal a last-eight spot against Czech’s seventh seed Tomas Berdych, who ousted Australian hope Bernard Tomic 6-2 7-6 (6-3) 6-2.
Andy Murray advanced into his sixth consecutive Australian Open quarter-final with a 6-4 6-7(5-7) 6-3 7-5 win over Bulgaria’s Grigor Dmitrov. The Scot will face Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios, who beat Italian Andreas Seppi in a 5-7 4-6 6-3 7-6(5) 8-6 five-set thriller.
Women’s third seed Simona Halep blasted 23 winners, 13 unforced errors, as she sail past No. 80 ranked Belgian Yanina Wickmayer 6-4 6-2 in 19 minutes to set up only her second meeting with Russia’s 10th-seed Ekaterina makarova, who defeated Julia Georges earlier on Sunday.
Halep will be counting on her previous victory over Makarova at New haven two seasons ago to spur her on, back on Tuesday.
Bouchard, unlike Sharapova, survived a second round surge from Begu to claim the first quarter-final ticket on Day 8 of the first Grand Slam of 2015.
The Canadian- a semi-finalist in Melbourne Park a year ago- races ahead 6-1 3-0 in about 40 minutes, but Begu won five games in a row to nose ahead 5-3. Bouchard closed in to 5-all but the No. 42 ranked Romanian notched up two more games to take the set into a decider.
Bouchard restored command to progress to her fourth Major last eight, where Sharapova lies the wait.
“She’s been really well in this tournament and also in the slams the last year,” Sharapova said of the Canadian. “realy confident tennis and inspired form. I expect her to come out and play a really good match. I’m sure she’ll come out and play extremely well.”