Late stand-in Liudmila Samsonova produced a mesmerising fightback to beat Olympic champion Belinda Bencic and clinch the Billie Jean King Cup for the Russian Tennis Federation.

After Daria Kasatkina swept to a 6-2 6-4 win over Jil Teichmann to put the Russians ahead against Switzerland, Samsonova produced a high-quality performance to win 3-6 6-3 6-4 against Bencic.

It meant there was no need for a doubles decider, with the Russian squad taking the match 2-0.

Samsonova had not expected to be involved in the singles contest in Prague, but a knee problem forced Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova to pull out just minutes before Saturday's final got under way, forcing Russian captain Igor Andreev into a reshuffle.

A worthy substitute, Samsonova is ranked 40th in the world, while Bencic sits at number 17, and this win was the Russian's third victory in three meetings this year with the Tokyo 2020 gold medallist.

One of those came in the final of the Berlin grass-court tournament, and the 22-year-old was not over-awed by another big occasion this time.

Just as she did in Berlin, Samsonova lost the opening set but then dominated, and by doing so she secured a fifth Russian triumph in this team competition, previously known as the Fed Cup.

Samsonova said: "I have too many emotions now. It's unbelievable. I'm unbelievably happy. It was an incredible fight. It was a more nervous game. It was more than tennis."

Andreev spoke of the strong bond in his squad, saying: "It's an historical win for us. It's been a long time without any trophies in team tennis. I'm very proud and very happy for the girls, the way they played.

"They're amazing, they're heroes, and they achieved this because they're a team – a real team – and real friends."

Russia dominated this event from 2004 to 2008, winning four of five titles, while Switzerland had only previously been to one final, when Martina Hingis and Patty Schynder were outmatched by Arantxa Sanchez Vicario and Conchita Martinez in the 1998 showpiece.

Australia and Switzerland secured their spots in the semi-finals of the Billie Jean King Cup and will go up against each other for a place in the final.

Belarus proved no match for Australia, who got the job done across their two singles matches on the day in the Czech Republic.

Storm Sanders got the ball rolling as she comfortably saw off Yuliya Hatouka 6-3 6-3 in the first contest of the day in Group B.

Ajla Tomljanovic was made to work a little harder by Aliaksandra Sasnovich as she lost the first set but eventually rallied to overcome her opponent 4-6 6-2 6-3.

It meant the two countries' doubles meeting was a dead rubber – Belarus at least took the opportunity to avoid a 3-0 annihilation as Sasnovich teamed up with Lidziya Marozava in the 6-4 6-4 defeat of Olivia Gadecki and Ellen Perez.

In Group D, Switzerland and the Czech Republic claimed one victory apiece in the singles – Marketa Vondrousova had too much for Viktorija Golubic in a 6-4 6-2 success that gave the Czechs the upper hand.

But Belinda Bencic levelled things up despite the unenviable task of facing world number three Barbora Krejcikova, emerging with a 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 success.

Bencic was then involved in the doubles decider as well, getting the better of Lucie Hradecka and Katerina Siniakova with Jil Belen Teichmann, their 6-3 6-3 win sealing the semis spot for the Swiss.

The Russian Tennis Federation – who eliminated defending champions France on Wednesday – and the United States are due to contest the other semi-final.

 

 

Belinda Bencic fought back to beat Angelique Kerber in a blockbuster showdown and help Switzerland eliminate Germany on day two of the Billie Jean King Cup in Prague.

Germany lost to hosts Czech Republic on the opening day and were brushed aside 3-0 by Switzerland on Tuesday, with world number nine Kerber losing 5-7 6-2 6-2 to Bencic.

Kerber was carrying an injury and was outlasted by the Olympic gold medallist, with that triumph coming after Viktorija Golubic defeated Andrea Petkovic 6-4 7-5.

Golubic and Jil Teichmann added further gloss to the scoreline by overcoming Anna-Lena Friedsam and Nastasja Mariana Schunk in the doubles.

Switzerland will now meet the Czech Republic in a winners-takes-all contest to determine who finishes top of Group D.

The upset of the day came in Group B as Australia beat Belgium 2-1, with Daria Gavrilova kicking things off by beating Greet Minnen 6-4 1-6 6-4.

Storm Sanders then battled back to beat Elise Mertens 4-6 7-6 (7-5) 6-0, rendering Mertens and Minnen's doubles win nothing more than a consolation. 

In Group A, Russia cruised to a 3-0 win over Canada.

Daria Kasatkina beat Carol Zhao 6-3 6-1 and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova was too strong for Rebecca Marino as she prevailed in three sets.

Slovakia top Group C, meanwhile, after beating the United States 2-1. Shelby Rogers fell 6-4 6-4 to Viktoria Kuzmova before Danielle Collins levelled with a 6-3 6-2 win against Anna Karolina Schmiedlova.

That set up a decider in the doubles, which went the distance as the Slovakian pair of Kuzmova and Tereza Mihalikova prevailed 6-2 6-7 (5-7) 12-10 in a thriller with Caroline Dolehide and CoCo Vandeweghe.

Anett Kontaveit beat Olympic champion Belinda Bencic and will face home favourite Petra Kvitova for a place in the Ostrava Open final.

Estonian Kontaveit, ranked 30th in the world, claimed her fourth top-20 win of the season as she prevailed 6-4 6-3 on Friday.

Kontaveit also defeated Bencic in the 2020 Australian Open, meaning she is 2-0 in their head-to-head rivalry.

Czech left-hander Kvitova awaits in the last four, after the second seed defeated Bencic's Swiss compatriot Jil Teichmann 6-4 6-4.

Teichmann beat Kvitova in their only previous meeting, but the world number 10 had too much on this occasion, along with the backing of the crowd to boot as she chases a 29th singles title of her career.

The other semi-final will see top seed Iga Swiatek face Maria Sakkari.

Last year's French Open winner Swiatek reached her first semi-final since May – when she landed the prestigious title in Rome – by overcoming Elena Rybakina 7-6 (7-5) 6-2.

Sakkari, meanwhile, ended Tereza Martincova's hopes in straight sets.

Greek star Sakkari ended Swiatek's reign as Roland Garros champion in June, beating the Polish 20-year-old in the quarter-finals in Paris.

Olympic gold medallist Belinda Bencic eased to a straight-sets win over Sara Sorribes Tormo to maintain her good form and book a place in the Ostrava Open quarter-finals.

Third seed Bencic needed just 88 minutes to see off her 36th-ranked opponent as she made it 15 victories from her past 18 matches.

Czech wildcard Tereza Martincova is also through to the last eight on home soil after battling past French Open finalist Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (8-6).

Martincova is into her fifth quarter-final of the season and will take on number four seed Maria Sakkari, who saw off Jelena Ostapenko 6-4 6-2 earlier on Thursday.

Also through to round three is Elena Rybakina following a hard-fought 6-3 2-6 6-1 win over qualifier Magda Linette, while Jil Teichmann – who shocked former world number one Angelique Kerber in the previous round – advanced in three sets against Alison Riske.

She will face Petra Kvitova for a place in the semi-finals. 

Belinda Bencic made a winning return to action as the Olympic champion defeated Zarina Diyas to seal a quarter-final spot at the Luxembourg Open.

Bencic, the unlikely successor in Tokyo, triumphed in straight sets 6-1 6-3 on Thursday to tee up a last-eight encounter with Liudmila Samsonova, who the Swiss lost to in Berlin earlier this year.

It was a welcome return to form for world number 12 Bencic after her defeat to eventual champion Emma Raducanu in the US Open quarter-finals last week.

Joining the top seed in the quarters is defending Luxembourg Open champion Jelena Ostapenko, who needed three sets to overcome Arianne Hartono.

Second seed Elise Mertens also progressed, though she had to come from behind to beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich 3-6 6-2 7-5.

In Thursday's other last-16 tie, Marie Bouzkova beat Greet Minnen to round off the quarter-finals line up.

Meanwhile, Sorana Cirstea and Jasmine Paolini will meet in the Zavarovalnica Sava Portoroz quarter-finals after respective victories over Tereza Martincova and Anna Kalinskaya.

Emma Raducanu says she is on her "own journey" after sensationally reaching the semi-finals of the US Open.

Raducanu's 6-3 6-4 win over Belinda Bencic – her first career top-40 opponent – saw her become the first qualifier in the Open Era to advance to the last four at Flushing Meadows, the 18-year-old doing so without dropping a set.

She also became the lowest-ranked player in history (150) to make this stage of the tournament, with Kim Clijsters in 2009 and Billie Jean King in 1979 achieving the same feat having been unranked.

Raducanu, who will face either Karolina Pliskova or Maria Sakkari for a place in the final, said: "I have an absolutely amazing team. I have a team back home who could not be here. I am sure they are watching, I hope!

"Thank you so much everyone. I wish you could be here with me but everything we have been working for has shown here.

"To have so many young players here doing so well shows how strong the next generation is. Everyone is on their trajectory, so I am just here doing what I can control, and it is my own journey."

Raducanu grew into the contest after being immediately broken to love and trailing 2-0, proving particularly robust on her opponent's serve.

Bencic landed 61 per cent of her first serves yet managed only a single ace. The Olympic champion was made to work for the 23 points she won on her first serve and then took just nine of a potential 21 on her second.

Raducanu, who managed six aces of her own, added: "Of course, playing Belinda, she is such a great opponent and is in great form, she hits the ball so hard, I had to adjust and adapt and it was a really tough match.

"I am so happy to come through and thank you so much for all your support today.

"It was 0-30 in my last couple of service games so to hold was pretty big, it was one point at a time and trying to focus on what I can control.

"Belinda was going to fight to the end but I am really pleased to come through that."

Emma Raducanu's stunning run at the US Open went on as she claimed the biggest scalp of her career against Belinda Bencic to reach the semi-finals, making history in the process.

Raducanu is the first qualifier in the Open Era to advance to the last four at Flushing Meadows and is sensationally still yet to drop a set, this time overcoming the Olympic champion – her first career top-40 opponent – 6-3 6-4.

Now, in this US Open packed full of surprises, the 18-year-old will certainly fancy her chances against either Karolina Pliskova or Maria Sakkari.

Raducanu had lost the opening two games against Shelby Rogers in the previous round but then won 12 of the remaining 13. She would have been prepared then for another tough start, immediately broken to love and again trailing 2-0.

The teenager soon grew into the contest and had Bencic on the back foot, able to squander an opportunity in the sixth game with a rash, rushed effort at the end of a rally but still break when her opponent double-faulted and then found the net.

Raducanu battled back from 0-30 down to hold and went after the Bencic serve again. Her ability to consistently return unsettled the more experienced player, who survived a scare after another double fault yet was beaten at the net when the next break point arrived, teed up by a staggering rally and forehand winner.

The opener was swiftly settled before Bencic gained a measure of control in the second only to be disrupted by the same issues again. A sublime Raducanu return gave her another opportunity, taken courtesy of the latest double fault.

Three-time major champion Andy Murray had told Amazon Prime that Raducanu would find it "difficult" to enjoy this match, but she cracked a smile having passed up a further opening and a wide grin then greeted the momentous clinching point.

Data Slam: Bencic beaten by Raducanu returns

This match was decided on Bencic's serve, as she became increasingly frustrated by her inability to break down Raducanu's return game. The 11th seed landed 61 per cent of her first serves yet fired in only a single ace. Bencic was made to work for the 23 points she won on her first serve and then took just nine of a potential 21 on her second.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Raducanu – 23/12
Bencic – 19/21

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Raducanu – 6/2
Bencic – 1/5

BREAK POINTS WON

Raducanu – 3/6
Bencic – 1/5

Ash Barty reached her sixth semi-final of the year after winning the battle of grand slam champions against Barbora Krejcikova at the Western & Southern Open.

World number one and top seed Barty – the Wimbledon titleholder – dispatched French Open champion Krejcikova in straight sets in Cincinnati on Friday.

Another slam champion awaits Barty in the form of Angelique Kerber, while wildcard Jil Teichmann continued her fairytale run with victory over Olympic gold medallist Belinda Bencic.

 

Coffee the tonic for in-form Barty

Australian star Barty was too good for Krejcikova, winning 6-2 6-4 at the WTA 1000 tournament.

Barty had to battle from a break down in the second set against the fast-rising Krejcikova, who has shot up from 65th in the world to a career high of number 10 this year.

After extending her season record to 38-7, Barty talked about the importance of drinking coffee in the morning.

"I travel with a French press and an AeroPress, just to have two options. Usually every tournament we go to, one of us has a cafe that we have been to before, so I have got a little section of all my local cafes from the tournaments, so we try and get out to those if we can," she said.

"This year, some places we haven't been able to; some places we have. It's been nice to get some sort of a mixture, but I'm pretty simple. I'm just a black coffee cup in the morning, and then I'm set."

Three-time major champion Kerber is next up after she was 6-4 3-3 ahead before Petra Kvitova retired hurt due to a stomach problem.

 

Teichmann takes down another star

Unheralded Swiss and world number 76 Teichmann claimed another scalp, this time upstaging countrywoman Bencic 6-3 6-2 in the quarter-finals.

Teichmann stunned world number two Naomi Osaka en route to the quarters and maintained her giant-slaying form in Cincinnati, where 10th seed Bencic became the latest victim.

"We hugged before the match; we hugged after the match," Teichmann said of the Bencic meeting. "We know that once we step on court it's business, it's just another player I have to deal with, and she had the same mindset. At the beginning it's obviously a bit special, but once we're in it, we just look at the game, not looking at the opponent, or at least I do that way."

Teichmann will take on fifth seed Karolina Pliskova, who advanced to her second successive WTA 1000 semi-final after Paula Badosa retired down 7-5 2-0.

Simona Halep, a three-time runner up in Cincinnati, claimed her first win since May by overcoming Magda Linette 6-4 3-6 6-0.

The 12th seed has just returned from a calf muscle tear which saw her miss the French Open and Wimbledon, and was defeated by Danielle Collins in Montreal last week.

However, at 1-4 down in the second set she required medical attention for what she described as a "sharp pain" in her right leg, but after a rain delay, the Romanian came out of the blocks to claim a third-set bagel.

Halep progressed to the Round of 32 where she will play American Jessica Pegula.

Sunday's breakthrough National Bank Open winner Camila Giorgo was beaten in straight sets by Pegula 6-2 6-2.

Former world number one Victoria Azarenka needed only one hour and nine minutes to dispose of Ludmilla Samsonova and seal her spot in the last 32.

The Belarussian triumphed 6-2 6-3 over the Russian, dominating her first serve and breaking Samsonova five times throughout the match.

Tokyo 2020 gold medalist Belinda Bencic eased past Marketa Vondrousova 6-3 7-5 continuing her bright recent run, winning in one hour and 27 minutes.

In the final match of the day's play, Caroline Garcia defeated 2017 U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens 7-6 (9-7) 4-6 6-4 in two hours and 33 minutes.

Dayana Yastremska, Bernarda Pera, Karolina Muchova, Ons Jabeur, Elena Rybakina, Veronika Kudermetova and Coco Gauff were all winners too.

Alexander Zverev followed up his stunning win over Novak Djokovic by storming to Olympic gold in the men's singles final.

A thumping 6-3 6-1 victory against Russian Olympic Committee's Karen Khachanov was the perfect way for world number five Zverev to land the biggest title of his career.

He won 10 of the last 11 games of his semi-final against world number one Djokovic and carried that form into Sunday's title match, brushing aside the threat across the net.

It makes him Germany's first men's singles champion at the Olympics. Steffi Graf won the women's title as part of a calendar Golden Slam in 1988, and four years later Boris Becker and Michael Stich teamed up to take doubles gold.

For the man who won the ATP Finals in 2018 and reached last year's US Open title match, this marked a step forward in a career many expect will eventually feature grand slam titles.

He secured a swift break in the first set against Khachanov, who was outstanding in the semi-finals against Pablo Carreno Busta but could not impose his game in the gold-medal match.

Another break followed and the set was gone in 43 minutes.

The second set rushed by in a mere 36 minutes, with Zverev against striking early and never looking back.

He created two break points in the second game of that set, and although Khachanov saved them, a third soon followed and the Russian netted on the forehand.

The momentum was all one way and there was never a moment when Khachanov, ranked 25th by the ATP, looked as though he might pose some danger. 

Zverev gave himself a first match point when he punched away a backhand volley, and the glory belonged to the German when Khachanov slapped a forehand into the net on the next point.


BENCIC DENIED GOLDEN DOUBLE

Belinda Bencic was the surprise champion in the women's singles and the Swiss had a chance to land a second gold medal on Sunday when she and Swiss partner Viktorija Golubic lined up in the doubles final.

It was not to be for Bencic and Golubic, however, as they were soundly beaten by the prolific Czech pair of Barbora Krejcikova and Katerina Siniakova.

A 7-5 6-1 win for the reigning French Open champions meant Bencic and Golubic were left with the silver medal.

But there was little in the way of regret for the Swiss pair, with Bencic showing off both her gold and silver medals after the match, saying: "We are overjoyed. We will fly back on Monday with other medallists. It's a great feeling to know people are waiting and they acknowledge the medals we won for our country.

"The week here was incredibly beautiful. We experienced so many emotions, and it's great to go back and share all of these emotions with everyone at home.

"It's not just about the medals or the titles, it's about the memories you create that will last forever. To share this with Viki is unbelievable.

"The whole week I never felt like I was in a normal tournament or playing alone. She was alongside me the entire way. I always tell her we won this gold medal together as well. When we will be 80 years old and have a coffee, we will talk about this moment and I cannot wait for that."

Belinda Bencic won the women's singles gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics after a bruising final against Marketa Vondrousova.

The ninth seed needed two and a half hours to overcome the 2019 French Open finalist 7-5 2-6 6-3 on Saturday.

Switzerland have now won five tennis medals in Olympics history, including three golds: Marc Rosset previously won the men's singles title in 1992, with Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka teaming up for the men's doubles in 2008.

There were four breaks of serve in the opening six games of the contest, Bencic eventually capitalising on a first set point.

Vondrousova began to find her rhythm in the second, raining down 14 winners to Bencic's four to level the match before breaking again at the start of the third.

Bencic responded by winning the next three games and picked up another crucial break to move 5-3 ahead, dropping to her knees in disbelief after taking the win on her second match point for her first title since 2019.

She could yet complete a remarkable double as she prepares for the women's doubles final on Sunday.

Svitolina rallies for historic bronze

Elena Svitolina had to dig deep to win an enthralling bronze medal match against Elena Rybakina.

The world number six lost a one-sided first set and faced a 4-1 deficit in the decider before prevailing 1-6 7-6 (7-5) 6-4.

Svitolina has made something of a habit of doing things the hard way in Tokyo, with four of her six matches going to a decider and more than 13 hours spent on court.

By contrast, world number 20 Rybakina had not dropped a set before losing in the semi-finals and looked to be in control as she raced through the opener.

Svitolina responded to take a tight second set and once more found the answer in the third when it seemed victory was slipping away, eventually winning Ukraine's first ever tennis medal after a gruelling two hours and 24 minutes.

"To win such a big battle for the bronze medal definitely means the world to me," she said, as per the ITF website. "Everyone in Ukraine is watching – we don't win so many medals, you know – so for sure, it's very special for me and for Ukraine.

"I was upset in the beginning, but I got back, pulled myself together. This was a hell of a match for me, but fighting for a bronze medal meant a lot to me and I was focused on that."

 

Brilliant bronze for Brazil

There was another first in the women's doubles match as Brazil ended their long wait for a tennis medal thanks to Laura Pigossi and Luisa Stefani.

The pair saved four consecutive match points in the deciding tie-break as they beat Wimbledon finalists Veronika Kudermetova and Elena Vesnina 4-6 6-4 (11-9).

"Words can't express what this medal means," Pigossi said. "It's a dream. I always wanted this medal, I always wanted this. I'm over the moon and speechless.

"Everything I've done, everything I've given up to get here, I always thought it was worth it, but now I have a medal to prove it. And we know that everyone in Brazil was behind us."

Marketa Vondrousova landed another huge scalp in the form of Elina Svitolina to book her place in the gold medal match at Tokyo 2020 against Belinda Bencic.

It has been a memorable week for Vondrousova, who knocked out cauldron-lighter and "face of the games" Naomi Osaka in round three.

One more hurdle still stands in her way in the form of ninth seed Bencic, who fought hard for a three-set triumph over Elena Rybakina.

VONDROUSOVA MARVELS AGAIN

Vondrousova has had a Games to remember and she was a 6-3 6-1 winner against heavily fancied fourth seed Svitolina, becoming the first female Czech to reach an Olympic singles final in the process.

It means the Czech Republic will have a women's singles competitor on the podium for the second straight Games after Petra Kvitova finished with bronze at Rio 2016.

Incredibly, Vondrousova did not even automatically qualify for these Games with Karolina Pliskova, Barbora Krejcikova, Kvitova and Karolina Muchova ahead of her in the qualifying pecking order.

Vondrousova opted to use her protected ranking, dating back to a wrist injury prior to the pandemic, meaning Muchova missed out. Though criticised at the time, she is the last of the four remaining.

TEARS FOR BENCIC

Switzerland has a proud history of tennis stars but neither the legendary Roger Federer nor the great Martina Hingis have won Olympic gold in a singles event. Bencic has the chance to do that, though.

She had to go the distance against Rybakina in a 7-6 (7-2) 4-6 6-3 victory, with Bencic fighting back from 5-2 down in the first set.

Eventually Bencic came through in two hours and 44 minutes and the tears poured as she made the final.

"My emotions right now... it's too high," Bencic told the ITF website. "To have a medal, it's the greatest thing. Even to be here as an athlete, in the Olympics, it's amazing."

It means Switzerland will medal for the fourth straight Games with Federer, Stan Wawrinka, Hingis and the recently retired Timea Bacsinszky all having medalled.

The last Swiss gold medallist was at Barcelona 1992 where Marc Rosset won the men's singles.

Elsewhere, singles world number one Ash Barty remains in the hunt for mixed doubles gold. She and partner John Peers defeated Greek pair Stefanos Tsitsipas and Maria Sakkari – winning on a 10-point tie-break after the first two sets were shared.

Naomi Osaka was never preordained to win gold at the Tokyo Olympics but it had felt that way until she ran into Marketa Vondrousova.

The surprising 6-1 6-4 loss that a lacklustre Osaka suffered on Tuesday could be explained away by the fact the 23-year-old had not played any competitive tennis since pulling out of the French Open at the end of May.

All the same, it was a major upset as world number 42 Vondrousova took out the highest remaining seed in the draw – the Japanese star who lit the Olympic cauldron on Friday.

Osaka's exit, after previous shock defeats for top seed Ash Barty and number three Aryna Sabalenka, has raised the prospect of a shock champion, just as occurred five years ago at the Rio Games when Monica Puig of Puerto Rico caused a sensation.

Now at the quarter-final stage, there is one former grand slam champion left in the field and two finalists at that level, but it really looks like anyone's title.


VONDROUSOVA SENSES AN OPPORTUNITY

It was remarkably straightforward for Vondrousova at Ariake Tennis Park, as she cruised through the opening set and soon reeled in Osaka's early break in the second.

Osaka saved two match points when serving to stay in the contest, but not a third, planting a backhand wide.

Considering Vondrousova reached the French Open final two years ago, in front of packed grandstands rather than the empty seats in Tokyo, it was no surprise she hesitated when asked whether this win over Osaka was the biggest of her career. It probably doesn't have that cachet, good a win though it was.

"Of course it's one of the biggest," Vondrousova said.

"Naomi is a great player, she has so many grand slams, so I knew it would be a tough match. But I'm just very happy with my play. I played amazingly in the first set, and then the second set was really tough. I'm just happy to be through.

"I think she was struggling a bit with my serving. Also, I use drop-shots very well. I'm just very happy with my game today."

She faces Spain Paula Badosa next and said: "It's very open now. I think every girl is playing really well. Now it's the quarter-final, so we'll see."


HAS SVITOLINA'S TIME ARRIVED?

A fixture in the top 10 over recent seasons, Svitolina has been unable to transfer her regular tour form onto the major stage on a consistent basis.

Maybe the Olympics will be a platform towards success on that stage, with Svitolina now the highest seed remaining in the draw, at number four. The Ukrainian is also on a high on the personal front, having married French tennis star Gael Monfils shortly before heading to Tokyo.

Two semi-finals, at Wimbledon and the US Open in 2019, have been her deepest runs in the majors, and this season has been one of diminishing returns, with a fourth-round run in Australia followed by a third-round Roland Garros exit and a round-two loss at Wimbledon.

Svitolina beat Maria Sakkari of Greece 5-7 6-3 6-4 on Tuesday, setting up a quarter-final against Italian Camila Giorgi who won 6-4 6-2 against Wimbledon runner-up Karolina Pliskova.

"I don't think I'm a favourite because there are lots of good players here and everyone is quite equal," Svitolina said.


A MUG SHOT?

Should Spain's Garbine Muguruza be considered the favourite from this point? With French Open and Wimbledon titles in her trophy room, Muguruza has shown she has what it takes to triumph on a big stage, and a clinical 6-4 6-1 win over Belgian Alison Van Uytvanck on Tuesday was just the job.

She goes on to face Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan, who edged past Croatian Donna Vekic.

Belinda Bencic of Switzerland caused a surprise by ousting the in-form reigning French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova, springing a 1-6 6-2 6-3 win that means there will be no repeat of the Roland Garros final in the quarter-finals.

That had been on the cards, but Bencic will be the player who takes on Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova for a place in the final four.

Pavlyuchenkova scored an impressive 6-1 6-3 victory over Sara Sorribes Tormo of Spain, the player who knocked out Barty in round one.

Russian Olympic Committee's Pavyluchenkova is looking to harness the form that took her to a maiden slam final, describing her Paris run as "a great experience to have".

"But every week is a new week and this is a new event," said the 30-year-old. "The Olympic Games is a very special event. It's different. It's nothing like the others."

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