In the marquee showdown of the day in Dubai, a battle of French Open champions went to Garbine Muguruza who swept past Iga Swiatek 6-0, 6-4 to advance to the quarterfinal round.
Muguruza won nine of the first 10 games before the Pol made a late charge.
“From the beginning, I was there to control the score, and was taking the advantage,” Muguruza said. “I think she missed, in the first set, a couple of shots here and there that gave me the extra advantage.
“I think I took my opportunities, and I was efficient when I had to break her serve, or stay with my serve,” Muguruza said. “Just happy with the way I started. I was very focused, looking forward to the match as well. Sometimes you start a little bit off, but today I felt good on the court.”
Muguruza will now meet Aryna Sabalenka in a rematch of the Spaniard’s thrilling win last week in Doha.
Karolina Pliskova’s slump continued. The former No. 1 was blown out by rising American Jessica Pegula for the second straight week, this time 6-0, 6-2.
While Pegula now meets Elise Mertens for a spot in the semifinals, Pliskova has only made one final four since the restart, that a final in Rome.
Anastasia Potapova also scored an upset getting past Belinda Bencic 6-1, 2-6, 7-5 .
After seven straight three set wins, Coco Gauff had an easier day needing just two sets to overwhelm qualifier Tereza Martincova 6-4, 6-2. Gauff will meet Jill Teichmann in the quarterfinals on Thursday.
With Bencic out, there will be a new Dubai champion this year.
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