ROLAND GARROS

Muguruza through to last eight at expense of Kuznetsova

The Spanish fourth seed reached the quarters in Paris for a third consecutive year with a straight sets win over the 2009 champion.

Muguruza through to last eight at expense of Kuznetsova
IAN LANGSDON EFE

Spanish fourth seed Garbiñe Muguruza reached the French Open quarter-finals for the third year in a row when a solid display earned her a 6-3 6-4 victory against former champion Svetlana Kuznetsova on Sunday.

Muguruza, who has yet to make it to the last four in Paris, played aggressively throughout, leaving little breathing space for the Russian 13th seed, the 2009 Roland Garros champion.

Muguruza peppered the court with winners -- which made up for numerous unforced errors -- and broke decisively on her seventh opportunity to lead 5-3 in the opening set.

She closed it out with a booming forehand winner and broke again in the third game of the second set with a service return winner.

Kuznetsova saw a lifeline when she broke back to 4-4 as Muguruza started to get inconsistent, only for the Spaniard to break again in the following game with a fine passing shot.

Muguruza, however, showed signs of nerves and wasted two match points before serving a double fault. She regained her composure, though, and wrapped it up on her fifth match point when Kuznetsova's backhand sailed long.

The 22-year-old Venezuelan-born fourth seed will next play the winner of the tie between Shelby Rogers of the United States and Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania for a place in the semi-finals.

"At the end it is always very tough. She is a player with a lot of experience and I just had to be there," Muguruza said. "Quarter-finals is a great run and I am looking forward to improving my result here."

Muguruza is seen as one of the new stars of the women's game after a breakthrough season in 2015 when she was runner-up to Serena Williams at Wimbledon and made the semis at the WTA Finals.