World no 2 Caroline Wozniacki needed three sets to battle past Latvia’s Anastasija Sevastova to reach the final eight of the Italian Open on Thursday.
Second seed Wozniacki won through 6-2, 5-7, 6-3 against 20th-ranked Sevastova to reach her first quarter-finals in Rome since 2011. She next meets Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit who defeated Venus Williams for the second time in a week after Madrid.
Kontaveit, 22, won 6-2, 7-6 (7/3) against the 37-year-old American who was seeded eighth in a tournament she won nearly two decades ago in 1999. Three-time winner Maria Sharapova ousted Daria Gavrilova 6-3, 6-4 and will play fifth seed and French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko who saw off Britain’s Johanna Konta 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Defending champion Elina Svitolina of Ukraine fought back from a first set wipeout against Daria Kasatkina to win 0-6, 6-3, 6-2. Simona Halep boosted her bid to retain the world number one ranking as the top seed advanced to the quarter-finals after American Madison Keys withdrew injured with a painful rib.