World No 1 Ashleigh Barty battled past Victoria Azarenka to reach the quarter-finals of the Miami Open.
Barty came through 6-1 1-6 6-2 against the 14th seed to win her ninth straight match at the tournament, having lifted the title the last time it was staged in 2019.
The 24-year-old will next face seventh seed Aryna Sabalenka, after she beat No 19 seed Marketa Vondrousova in straight sets.
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The Australian, who could lose her spot at the top of the rankings to Naomi Osaka this week, looked in excellent form in the first set against Azarenka as she broke twice to take it 6-1.
Azarenka improved in the second set and broke early when Barty netted a forehand.
The three-time Miami champion saved three break points in her next service game and then broke again for 4-0 before clinching the set.
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But Barty came out on top in the decider and secured victory in an hour and 52 minutes.
Osaka remains on course for a meeting with Barty in the final after beating Elise Mertens 6-3, 6-3.
Osaka has won her last 23 successive matches and will face Maria Sakkari next, who beat Jessica Pegula 6-4. 2-6, 7-6(6.
Elina Svitolina came through a tough encounter with Petra Kvitova to reach the last eight.
Ninth seed Kvitova took the opening set, but couldn’t keep her level up as Svitolina, the fifth seed, won 2-6, 7-5, 7-5. Svitolina will face Anastasija Sevastova next after she won 6-1, 7-5 against Ana Konjuh.
Ons Jabeur has been knocked out. She fell to Sara Sorribes Tormo 6-4, 0-6, 6-1.
The Spaniard will face Bianca Andreescu in the quarters after the Canadian came from a set down to emphatically knock out two-time Grand Slam winner Garbine Muguruza 3-6, 6-3, 6-2 in two hours and 13 minutes under the lights.
It is the biggest win since the 2019 US Open champion’s comeback to the tour.
“It was really tough. She started out playing really, really well. I don’t think I was at the level I wanted to be right at the start of the match, because I knew she was going to come out really, really strong, and that’s what she did,” Andreescu told reporters after the match.
“But I had to re-adapt, which I did in the second set. I regrouped. I kept fighting. I changed my game plan a little bit as well. And it worked.”
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