Aryna Sabalenka cut a commanding figure as she easily defeated Emma Navarro to sweep to the French Open quarter-finals. Her victory is a clear indication of how committed she is to her plays, and a dire warning to her opponents.

The Australian Open champion defeated 22nd seed Navarro conclusively 6-2, 6-3, playing with controlled aggression. The American Navarro defeated Sabalenka on the hard courts of Indian Wells earlier in the season, but the Belarussian Sabalenka easily overcame her on the Paris clay.

Sabalaneka will now play against Mirra Andreeva in the last eight. The Russian youngster defeated Moscow-born French player Varvara Gracheva with a score of 7-5 6-2. If Sabalenka wins the quarter-finals, she could face her good friend Elena Rybakina in the semi-finals, after the Kazakh won against Elina Svitolina. 

Sabalenka to defeat world No. 1 Swiatek? 

Either Sabalenka or Rybakina is expected to challenge two-time reigning champion Swiatek for the title. Prior to Paris, Sabalenka lost the clay-court finals to Swiatek in Rome and Madrid. Rybakina is the only remaining player with a winning record against her. 

However, Sabalenka’s win against Navarro showed how impressive she is on the court. She took advantage of the first chance to break through and won four straight games, overwhelming Navarro with her immense serve and effortless forehand power.

“I was going into it wanting to fight for every point…She is a tough opponent but I am happy to get through the match,” Sabalenka admitted. 

She has an edge against her next opponent. Andreeva, whom she will face in the quarter-finals, has never before made it to the Grand Slam final eight. More to the point, she has suffered crushing losses in her two previous meetings with Sabalenka, most recently in a straight-set loss at the Madrid Open this past month.

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Source: BBC

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