After Russians Svetlana Kuznetsova, Vera Zvonareva and Ekaterina Alexandrova reached the St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy quarterfinals on Wednesday, the next day was even more successful for home players, as they won all the four second-round matches on Thursday’s schedule. This means that seven Russians are in St. Petersburg quarterfinals, the highest number in WTA history. Romanian qualifier Jaqueline Cristian is the sole representative of another country.
Aliaksandra Sasnovich and Katerina Siniakova were the only two non-Russian players in Thursday’s action, while even they have close ties with Russia. Sasnovich is from Belarus, while Siniakova speaks fluent Russian as her father is Russian.
Opening Thursday’s schedule, wildcard Margarita Gasparyan followed up her upset of 2017 St. Petersburg champion Kristina Mladenovic with a 6-4 6-4 win over Katerina Siniakova. The world No.126 Gasparyan has now registered back-to-back main-draw wins for the first time since 2019 Luxembourg and reached her first WTA 500 quarterfinal since 2015 Moscow.
Eighth seed Daria Kasatkina edged Aliaksandra Sasnovich 5-7 6-3 7-6(2) and is now one match win away from her third career semifinal in St. Petersburg.
In an all-Russian derby, qualifier Anastasia Gasanova saved three match points to prevail against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 1-6 7-6(8) 7-6(4) in three hours and eight minutes. Let me remind you, yesterday Gasanova won what was by then the longest ever St. Petersburg match, lasting three hours and four minutes, but the record was broken right away as Vera Zvonareva played for three hours and ten minutes in the following marathon.
The last second-round match was another all-Russian marathon. Second seed Veronika Kudermetova fought past qualifier Kamilla Rakhimova 7-5 3-6 7-6(5).
The quarterfinal pairs are as follows: Ekaterina Alexandrova  vs. Margarita Gasparyan, Vera Zvonareva vs. Anastasia Gasanova, Jaqueline Cristian vs. Svetlana Kuznetsova  and Daria Kasatkina  vs. Veronika Kudermetova . As I pointed out in the beginning, seven of these eight players are Russian. The previous record was six, set at Moscow 2005.