An upset is always lurking when Lucie Safarova is in the game, and given her walkover relaxation in the second-round and Maria Sharapova’s hard labor against qualifier Heather Watson to reach the third round, the encounter of the Czech and the Russian promised a close battle. In the end, favorite Sharapova did advance, this time in not more than an hour and 45 minutes, 6-2 7-6(5), but only after surviving a comeback of 0-3 to 6-5 on the side of Safarova in the second set.
In the quarterfinals, the second-seeded Sharapova will face eighth seed Samantha Stosur, who beat Dominika Cibulkova 6-4 7-5. As for the other members of the final eight, Sara Errani won 12 of the last 15 games to recover from 3-6 0-1 and defeat Marion Bartoli 3-6 6-2 6-2. Her next opponent will be Nadia Petrova, who stopped Petra Martic, the conqueror of Petra Kvitova.
Top seed Victoria Azarenka beat Roberta Vinci 6-4 6-2 and will play Angelique Kerber, who lost just two games against Urszula Radwanska, 6-1 6-1. Agnieszka Radwanska is through to the quarters, with a 6-4 6-3 win over Jamie Hampton, while Caroline Wozniacki edged Li Na, who committed 76 unforced errors, 4-6 6-3 6-4. (photo: Tennis Buzz)