Halep growing in confidence as Dubai quarters are finalised

Petra Kvitova- Dubai 2019- Jimmie48/WTA

Second seed and two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova fought back from a set down to beat fellow Czech Katerina Siniakova 6-7 (3-7) 6-4 6-4 and reach the last 16.

Despite losing the opening set to Kerber 5-7, the 33-year-old Hsieh managed to secure a hard-fought 6-4 victory in the second set.

Crowd favourite and third seed Halep coped with gusty conditions at the Aviation Club as she beat Lesia Tsurenko 6-3, 7-5, breaking seven times.

Elsewhere, Hsieh Su-Wei defeated Belarusian Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-1, 6-2 while Viktoria Kuzmova accounted for seventh seed Kiki Bertens, beating this month's St Petersburg champion 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (8/6).

"It's definitely a big motivation for me", she said. I had something different to do in my life. I wasn't really that prepared for this tournament.

"But I have gained energy from this win".

"I'm still a little angry about it as I felt I was playing really good and I was playing good shots during the game", Jabeur said. The wind was just awful today, to be honest.

Halep reached the final in Doha last week and looks set to go similarly deep at this Premier 5 event after booking a last-eight spot in the United Arab Emirates.

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It was her first match since since splitting with Sascha Bajin last week. "I still feel like I have a lot to learn".

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.

"My mindset now is just to finish the points as quick as possible", she said. "I think there should be more (Asian) girls looking at her and trying to work super hard". "I felt more relaxed in the final set, so I gained the match pretty well". Also I have no expectations. I feel that my game is pretty strong, also physically, even if I'm exhausted a little bit.

"I feel close to my highest level".

"Second set I was slowing down a little bit, so it's not a good sign", said Hsieh.

Osaka had not competed since winning the Australian Open in January for her second consecutive Grand Slam title, a victory that also allowed her to become the first tennis player from Asia to lead the rankings. Taiwan's Hsieh Su-Wei in action during the match against Japan's Naomi Osaka.

It was at this point that Osaka briefly broke down and had to hide her face as she wiped away tears.

But what of Naomi Osaka, who was playing her first tournament as the new World No1?

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