One of the biggest young stars on the Tour and the 8th seed in Hua Hin Dayana Yastremska has stayed on the title course after a 7-6, 6-1 win over the top seed Garbine Muguruza in an hour and 40 minutes. An 18-year-old won their previous match at the end of the season in Luxembourg and she had the upper hand today as well despite hitting seven double faults, saving seven out of nine break points and breaking Muguruza on five occasions to seal the deal and reach the semis.
Dayana won half of the return points against the struggling Spaniard who is miles from the form that carried her towards the WTA throne and two Grand Slam titles. Yastremska was the dominant figure on the court, leaving her rival on just five winners and crumbling her with a steady pace from the baseline, especially in the second set.
Garbine led 3-1 and 4-3 in the opener but she squandered both breaks, allowing Dayana to stay in the set and losing it 7-5 in the tie break despite saving two set points on serve in the 12th game. Carried by this boost, Yastremska raced through the second set with three breaks of serve, sealing the deal after forcing an error from Muguruza in the seventh game and moving two wins away from the second WTA title.
Magda Linette had to stay on the court for two and a half hours against Monica Niculescu yesterday and it was a more relaxed day at the office for her today, toppling Yafan Wang 6-2, 6-3 in an hour and 42 minutes to join Dayana in the semis.
The Pole saved five out of six break points and she was all over her rival on the return, creating no less than 19 break points and converting five to stay ahead all the time. Magda claimed the opener with breaks in games three and five, serving well after a shaky opening game to dominate in the rest of the set.
Three breaks of serve were more than enough for Magda to cement the win and enter the semi-final where she will face Yastremska in the battle for the place in the final. The 6th seed Ajla Tomljanovic took down the 4th seed Saisai Zheng 6-1, 6-3 in an hour and 24 minutes, losing serve twice but delivering a superb performance on the return to steal almost 60% of the points on Zheng's serve.
The Chinese had to play against 12 break points and she suffered six breaks, dropping nine of the first ten games before competing on a little bit higher level, coming back to 3-3 before Ajla won the last three games for a commanding win.
In the longest match of the day, Tamara Zidansek defeated Viktorija Golubic 4-6, 6-1, 6-2 in two hours and ten minutes, dropping the opener but never looking back after that to secure the place in the semi-final. Quarter-final results:
Dayana Yastremska (UKR) vs Garbine Muguruza (ESP) 7-6(5) 6-1
Magda Linette (POL) vs Yafan Wang (CHN) 6-2 6-3
Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) vs Saisai Zheng (CHN) 6-1 6-3
Tamara Zidansek (SLO) vs Viktorija Golubic (SUI) 4-6 6-1 6-2