The 21-year-old qualifier, ranked 292nd, had won her first-ever tour-level match in the opening round of the WTA 500 event to set up the clash with Czech Pliskova in her first meeting with a top 100 player. "I'm not saying I will for sure, but it's going to be a very tough match for both of us". "It was really tricky for me to come back from being 3-5 down".
Elina Svitolina reached the third round of the Abu Dhabi Open with a 6-4, 6-1 victory over Russian veteran Vera Zvonareva on Saturday while Karolina Pliskova was eliminated in two sets per qualification. "So in general, it gives me a lot of confidence starting the year like that and I'm super happy to travel to Australia with some good matches with me". "Actually, I thought I would lose in qualifiers or something like that, but I just kept pushing myself, like, I need to win and I want to win".
'I had a (2021) goal to be Top 200, actually, Gasanova added. I don't know if I did this today, but that's my goal.
Pliskova, therefore, starts her year on a negative note, but there were no such problems for second seed Elina Svitolina, who was a 6-4 6-1 victor against Vera Zvonareva. Kenin converted the second of her two break opportunities to win the game, then force a tiebreaker and a third set.
Next up is a quarterfinal match with ninth-seeded Maria Sakkari, who beat former French Open and Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza 7-5, 6-4, posting 33 winners to five for the more defensive Muguruza.
"She was striking the ball really well", Svitolina said.
Also victorious on Sunday were a pair of unseeded players, Ukrainian teenager Marta Kostyuk and Sara Sorribes Tormo of Spain, who will face off Monday in the quarterfinals.