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By Adrianna Outlaw | Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Russian qualifier Elena Rybakina arrived in St. Petersburg ranked No. 450.

The 18-year-old upstart continues to be a world-beater in her audacious breakout tournament.

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Rybakina staved off match point shocking third-seeded Caroline Garcia, 4-6, 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5), to charge into her first WTA quarterfinal.

It was Rybakina’s first Top 10 win and came one round after she surprised Timea Bacsinszky, spoiling the Swiss baseliner’s 2018 debut.

The Russian hit six aces and seven double faults staging spirited rallies from a break down on two different occasions in the second set.

Facing a 0-4 deficit in the second-set tie break, Rybakina reeled off five consecutive points. Serving at 5-6, she saved a match point, winning the final three points of the tie break to force a decisive set.

An explosive player willing to move forward and smack swing volleys, Rybakina showed a willingness to attack.

Rybakina served for the match at 5-4, Rybakina was two points from victory only to see Garcia respond and break point. The Frenchwoman eventually went up 6-5 before Rybakina forced the tie break. She closed a career-best win in two hours, 27 minutes.

Aiming to continue her inspired run, Rybakina will face either fifth-seeded Julia Goerges or 2016 champion Roberta Vinci for a spot in the semifinals.

Petra Kvitova cranked crosscourt backhands to break home favorite Elena Vesnina in the opening game. Kvitova never looked back in a 6-2, 6-0 shellacking of the seventh-seeded Russian.

The two-time Wimbledon champion did not drop serve powering through a second-round meeting with Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu.

Begu beat lucky loser Andrea Petkovic, 7-6 (5), 6-1.

Reigning Roland Garros champion Jelena Ostapenko defeated Russian wild card Vera Zvonareva, 7-6 (6), 6-3.

Next up for the second-seeded Latvian is the winner of the Kvitova vs. Begu match.


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