Dubai Tennis 2019: Elina Svitolina one step closer to hat-trick of titles
Ukrainian sets up last-four clash with Belinda Bencic, while Petra Kvitova faces Hsieh Su-wei in other semi-final
Elina Svitolina beat Carla Suarez Navarro 6-2, 6-3 to reach the semi-finals of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Thursday night.
Svitolina, who won the Dubai title in 2017 and 2018 and is looking for an unprecedented third straight title, will face Belinda Bencic in the last four.
Bencic sends Halep out
Swiss Bencic defeated former world No 1 Simona Halep in three sets on Thursday to seal a spot in the semi-finals of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.
The 21-year-old outlasted the reigning French Open champion, a winner in Dubai in 2015, in two hours and 17 minutes on Centre Court, despite going a set down, to eventually triumph 4-6, 6-4, 6-2.
Bencic will now play in the last four either two-defending champion Elina Svitolina or Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro, who took to the court immediately after her victory.
Kvitova powers into semis
No 2 seed Petra Kvitova raced into the semi-finals at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships with a convincing 6-4, 6-0 victory against Viktoria Kuzmova on Thursday.
The two-time Wimbledon champion, winner in Dubai in 2013, needed only one hour and two minutes to see off her Slovakian opponent on Centre Court.
Kvitova will take on Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei for a place in the final after the world No 31 upset 2015 finalist Karolina Pliskova in the preceding match.
Hsieh's strong comeback
Hsieh booked her place in the semi-finals by registering a remarkable comeback against Pliskova.
The world No 31, who defeated Angelique Kerber in the last 16, rebounded from 5-1 down in the third set to eventually win 6-4, 1-6, 7-5, rounding out the match in a little less than two hours.
Updated: February 21, 2019 11:14 PM