Azarenka, Wozniacki through to Qatar quarters

ESPN staff
February 14, 2013
Victoria Azarenka made quick work of Christina McHale in Doha © Getty Images

World No. 1 and defending champion Victoria Azarenka has reached the quarter-finals of the Qatar Open by dispatching Christina McHale 6-0 6-0.

The 20-year-old McHale was completely outclassed by the Belarusian in one hour and seven minutes on court.

Amazingly the American came into the match with a 1-0 lead in the pair's head-to-head match-up on the WTA Tour.

However that statistic does not tell the whole story as Azarenka had to pull out of their 2010 meeting through injury when she had a one-set lead.

Azarenka will now face her first seeded opponent in this year's competition: No. 6 seed Sara Errani.

Errani defeated Daniela Hantuchova in her third round match 7-5 5-7 6-2 and gave notice to Azarenka that her serve is in impeccable form.

The 25-year-old from Bologna landed 94% of her first serves, meaning she only hit six second serves in the two hours and 37 minutes in which she was on court.

Caroline Wozniacki continued her dominance over Germany's Mona Barthel with a hard-fought 7-6(6) 6-3 victory in an hour and 45 minutes.

Barthel had lost both previous meetings between the two 22-year-olds but, aside from a first-round exit at the Australian Open, has been in consistent form in the first part of this year. She recently claimed the Open GDF Suez in Paris and reached the latter stages of the Auckland Open and Hobart International.

But Wozniacki gritted her teeth in the first set and saved seven of the nine break points against her whilst converting two of the four breakers she had. It earned her a tie-break and the world No. 10 showed better composure to take the set.

Wozniacki's ability to get herself out of a hole was needed in the second set too, even though she comfortably won in the end. This time she rescued six of the seven break points against her while needing five opportunities to win two games on her opponent's serve. Her win sets up a quarter-final clash with Agnieszka Radwanska.

No. 3 seed Maria Sharapova beat the Czech Republic's Klara Zakopalova 6-3 6-3 to set up her quarter-final with Australian No. 8 seed Sam Stosur. The Russian was not at her best and served nine double faults as well as facing 10 break points against her, however she saved seven of them.

Stosur was on court for only two minutes less than Sharapova in her 6-4 7-5 win over world No. 51 Svetlana Kuznetsova.

The Australian had only won one of their previous four meetings on the Tour, in 2009 in Toronto, and has just shaken off a thigh problem which impeded her in last weekend's Fed Cup tie with the Czech Republic.

Seed No. 2 Serena Williams kept her night's work to under an hour as she beat Urzula Radwanska 6-0 6-3. The 31-year-old from Florida faces No. 7 seed Petra Kvitova after the Czech player came from one set down to beat Russian Nadia Petrova 4-6 6-4 6-3.

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