Madrid PHOTOS: Favorites power into quarterfinals


Quarterfinals are set at the Mutua Madrid Open and all leading players confidently won their third-round matches on Wednesday.

World No.1 Naomi Osaka beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-2 6-3 to reach the quarterfinals in the Spanish capital for the first time and will next play Belinda Bencic, who stopped qualifier Kateryna Kozlova 6-0 6-2.

Third seed Simona Halep, the 2016 and 2017 Madrid champion, double-bageled Viktoria Kuzmova in just 45 minutes, and is scheduled to open Thursday’s quarterfinal action at noon local time against ninth seed Ashleigh Barty, who progressed into the last eight by beating Yulia Putintseva 4-6 6-1 6-2.

Eighth seed Sloane Stephens came from a set down to win 3-6 6-3 6-2 against Zheng Saisai and set up a quarterfinal against Petra Martic, who advanced when Donna Vekic retired in the deciding set.

The quarterfinals will also feature a rematch of last year’s final — three-time Madrid champion Petra Kvitova, seeded second this week, will face seventh seed Kiki Bertens on Thursday night, as both advanced with straight-set victories, over Caroline Garcia and Anastasija Sevastova respectively.


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