Ostapenko sinks Muguruza, faces Barty in Wuhan Open semis

Ostapenko, the only seed left in the competition, will now square up to Ashleigh Barty in the semi-finals after the Aussie pulled off a major upset against former world number one Karolina Pliskova.

It was not a good day for the other Pliskova sister, though, with top seed and defending champion Kristyna beaten 7-6 (7/5) 6-1 by Kurumi Nara in the second round of the Tashkent Open.

"It's been an awesome season, it really has", Barty said. Muguruza, perhaps buoyed by her performance in the first set, was able to break back and even up proceedings at 3-3, though the Spaniard was no longer playing as well as she had in the first set and was immediately broken once again.

"I've played Karolina a couple of times now, and it's been very close every time", Barty said in her on-court post-match interview.

However 23-year-old Muguruza then regained her composure to win the deciding set 6-4, to set up a quarter-final date with French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko.

Little separated Pliskova and Barty.

"Today she (Ostapenko) went for her shots, she served pretty good and she returned very good as well", she added.

"I played against her this year in Rome", Ostapenko said.

Defeat for Pliskova secured Muguruza's place at the rankings summit for the time being, but she swiftly lost her place in this tournament at the hands of Ostapenko.

Emboldened by a coaching visit, Ostapenko changed direction down the line with bold declarity powering through three consecutive games to take the 43-minute second set. Ostapenko is 0-2 against Muguruza.

"She will face Caroline Garcia, who registered her 39th tour‐level match win of season and clinched the fifth semifinal, the first ever in a Premier 5 event as she beat Ekaterina Makarova 7-6 6-4". "It was a close match at the end, three sets".

The 80th-ranked Greek qualifier scored her third straight-sets win in a row dispatching France's Alize Cornet, 7-6 (2), 7-5.

"I mean she's a great player and it's gonna be a very, very tough match", Sakkari said.

  • Stacy Allen