On the quarterfinals Thursday at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, unseeded Barbora Krejcikova and Jil Teichmann comfortably advanced to their first WTA 1000 semifinal, while seeds Garbine Muguruza and Eliste Mertens fought through three-setters to progress.
Barbora Krejcikova eased into the biggest semifinal of her singles career with a 6-0 6-2 demolition of Anastasia Potapova. The Czech’s stellar doubles career includes five Grand Slam titles (two in women’s doubles and three in mixed doubles). A run to the 2020 French Open fourth round kicked off her ascent in singles. The former doubles world No.1 Krejcikova cracked the Top 100 in singles last October and rose to career-high of No.59 in February this season.
Swiss world No.54 Jil Teichmann never dropped serve in her quarterfinal encounter with Coco Gauff. The 6-3 6-3 victory is Teichmann’s first over Gauff in their three career meetings, all of which took place in 2021.
After starting the season with first-round losses to Gauff at the Gippsland Trophy and the Australian Open, Teichmann reached the Phillip Island Trophy quarterfinals, the Adelaide International semis, and now her first ever WTA 1000 semis.
Tenth seed Elise Mertens saved three match points and won 11 games in a row to beat American Jessica Pegula 5-7 7-5 6-0. Mertens lost the first set, even though she had a break point for a 5-2 lead, while Pegula failed to serve out the match at 5-3 in the second set and wasted three match points in the following game. As physical and mental tiredness started taking the hold of Pegula, Mertens continued her momentum from the second set to dominate the decider.
Ninth seed Garbine Muguruza advanced to her third Dubai semifinal by defeating third seed Aryna Sabalenka for the second time in as many weeks, 3-6 6-3 6-2. The Spaniard has now recorded her WTA-leading 16th match-win of the season and her next goal is to reach her third final in four tournaments. Having earned wins over Amanda Anisimova, Iga Swiatek and Aryna Sabalenka this week, Muguruza is a clear title favorite in Dubai.