In one of the matches of the tournament, world no. 1 Ashleigh Barty toppled Petra Kvitova 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 in two hours and eight minutes. It was the second straight victory for the Aussie over the Czech, winning just three points more than the more experienced rival and saving five out of seven break points to cross the finish line first after adding three breaks to her tally.
Barty had 31 winners and 20 unforced errors while Kvitova counted to 36 winners and 28 mistakes, battling hard from start to finish with aggressive and attacking tennis. Petra had the upper hand in the first set, dropping seven points in five service games and earning a break at 2-2 after a return winner.
Serving for the set at 5-3, Petra fired a service winner to close the opener in 35 minutes, hoping for more of the same in the rest of the encounter. Ashleigh was in all kinds of trouble in set number two, fending off five break points in three different service games to stay on the positive side of the scoreboard, securing a break at 5-4 with a perfect lob to steal the set and gain the momentum ahead of the decider.
There, they traded breaks in the opening two games and stayed neck and neck until the eighth game when Petra squandered game points to suffer a break and send Ashleigh 5-3 up. Serving for the triumph, the Aussie seized the fourth match point with a forehand winner to seal the deal and advance into the semi-final, just like in Wuhan last week.
Kiki Bertens has stayed in contention for the WTA Finals spot, ousting the 3rd seed Elina Svitolina 7-6, 6-2 in an hour and 44 minutes to join Barty in the last four. Kiki repelled four out of five break chances to keep the pressure on Elina who got broken three times from seven opportunities offered to her rival, ending the campaign in the quarters.
The opening set lasted for more than an hour, with Bertens opening a 4-1 lead before the Ukrainian erased the deficit and leveled the score at 4-4. Kiki fended off a break point in the 11th game and prevailed 8-6 in the breaker for a massive boost.
Bertens had the upper hand in set number two, dropping five points behind the initial shot and stealing Svitolina's serve in games three and five before emerging at the top with a powerful hold at 5-2 that pushed her into the semis.