Under the Patronage of H.h. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai
Dubai, UAE – February 22, 2023: World No.3 Jessica Pegula survived an early scare to power into the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships quarter-finals with a commanding 6-4 6-3 victory over qualifier Ana Bogdan on Centre Court.
Romania’s Bogdan broke her top-ranked opponent in game two and promptly marched into a 3-1 lead, before Pegula turned on the afterburners to win five of the next six games to clinch the first set.
Attempting to reach a second successive WTA final after her loss to World No.1 Iga Swiatek in Doha final last weekend, Pegula remained on top in the second set, closing the match out in just one hour and 36 minutes to become the first name in the Dubai quarter-finals.
“She was playing really well and has played a lot of matches on these courts and in these conditions. She came out really intense so I really had to raise my level. I’m just glad I was able to come back in that first set and kept my focus,” said Pegula, whose parents own NFL team Buffalo Bills and NHL outfit Buffalo Sabres.
KEYS UNLOCKS AZARENKA DEFENCE
Pegula’s compatriot Madison Keys, attempting to reach her first Dubai quarter-final, also continued her impressive form by seeing off 15th seed Victoria Azarenka 6-2 6-1 in just 57 minutes. While Azarenka appeared to be struggling for movement with a leg injury, Keys’ resounding victory follows her impressive dismantling of fourth seed Caroline Garcia in the Round of 32.
A Grand Slam finalist at the US Open, Keys showed great concentration to get the job done. “(Azarenka) obviously wasn’t feeling her best, but I guess I get to play another match. I’ll take what I did today and do it again tomorrow,” said the 27-year-old. “In a situation like today all you can do is focus on your own game and play your shots.”
RELAXED PLISKOVA REMAINS ON COURSE
Over on Court One, Karolina Pliskova continued her fine form at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium, securing her place in the quarter-finals with a 7-5 6-7 6-2 victory over Anhelina Kalinina.
Admitting she feels “relaxed” in Dubai, 2015 runner-up Pliskova followed up her emphatic 6-1 6-2 victory over No.6 seed Maria Sakkari in the Round of 32 with another solid performance against the Ukraine’s Kalinina, who dumped out 10th seed Veronika Kudermetova in her opening match.
GRAB YOUR SEATS
Tickets for the 31st Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships are on sale at dubaidutyfreetennischampionships.com, starting from Dh55. Tickets are also available at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium Box Office between 9am and 9pm daily. The Championships starts with the 23rd staging of the WTA event, which runs until February 25, before the 31st staging of the ATP Tour 500 tournament from February 27 to March 4. Both events carry equal prize money.
The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships is owned and organised by Dubai Duty Free and held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.