Pavlyuchenkova into Doha semifinals as Swiatek and Osaka wait

tennis15 February 2024 16:49| © AFP
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Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova © Getty Images

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova made her way into the semifinals of the WTA 1000 tournament in Doha with a 7-5, 6-4 win over the American Danielle Collins on Thursday.

Pavlyuchenkova, who had never beaten Collins in their three previous meetings, will meet Canadian Kazakhstan's Elena Rybakina, the third seed, in the last four.

Later on Thursday, world No 1 Iga Swiatek takes on Victoria Azarenka while a resurgent Naomi Osaka is up against Karolina Pliskova, winner on Sunday of the Transylvania Open.

Pavlyuchenkova, ranked 32 in the world, needed one hour and 34 minutes to see off Collins, a former world No 7 who had to qualify this week.

The Russian's only stutter came in the first set when she coughed up a 5-2 lead but she regrouped to take it 7-5 and went on to claim victory on her first match point.

"I was injured for a long time, so I'm happy to be back and able to fight on all points, and victories give me confidence," said Pavlyuchenkova in the post-match court interview.

"I've been working a lot on the mental aspect and I feel like it's paying off," added the 32-year-old, a finalist at Roland Garros in 2021.