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Dubai tennis: Pliskova survives scare; Svitolina stunned

James Jose/Dubai
Filed on March 9, 2021
Second seed Karolina Pliskova serves during her match on Tuesday. (Supplied photo)

In another match, Russian wildcard Anastasia Potapova shocked American 11th seed Madison Keys 6-4, 6-3

Second seed Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic overcame a blip to move into the third round of the WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship on Tuesday.

The world No.6, runner-up here in 2015, rallied after losing the second set, to get the better of Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-2 at the Aviation Club Tennis Centre.

Pliskova, a former world No.1, served nine aces and had 11 double faults, but came up with 43 winners to that of Sevastova’s 13. Sevastova had five aces and three double faults.

Pliskova will take on the winner of the match between France’s Kristina Mladenovic and the USA’s Jessica Pegula, in the next round.

Meanwhile, in other matches, Russian wildcard Anastasia Potapova shocked American 11th seed Madison Keys 6-4, 6-3, while American wildcard Cori Gauff stunned 12th seed Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-3.

Top seed Svitolina shown the door

Top seed Elina Svitolina of Ukraine was shown the door e on Tuesday evening.

The world No.5, who had won back-to-back titles here in 2017 and 2018, succumbed to Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova, three times runner-up here, 6-2, 4-6, 6-1 in a match that lasted an hour and 52 minutes, on Centre Court.

Sabalenka eases past Cornet

Third seed Aryna Sabalenka also cruised into the third round on Tuesday.

The world No.8 from Belarus hardly broke a sweat as she eased past Frenchwoman Alize Cornet 6-2, 6-4 in an hour and 27 minutes, in the second round match, at the Aviation Club Tennis Centre.

The 22-year-old will go up against either Anett Kontaveit of Estonia or Romania’s Sorana Cirstea, in the next round.

Martincova hands Bertens shock defeat

Qualifier Tereza Martincova of the Czech Republic handed fifth seed Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands a shock defeaton Tuesday.

The 26-year-old from Prague won the second round fixture 6-1, 6-4 in an hour and 18 minutes, at the Aviation Club Tennis Centre.

Martincova will take on American wildcard Cori Gauff, in the next round. Gauff had shocked 12th seed Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-3, earlier in the day.

Meanwhile, Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic, champion here in 2019, was stretched by Veronika Kudermetova before eventually prevailing over the Russian, 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, in a match that lasted two hours and 38 minutes.





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