MONTERREY, Mexico – Two-time Grand Slam champion Victoria Azarenka ousted four-time champion Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in Friday’s final quarterfinal in Monterrey, 6-0, 6-4.
“It was a great match and I’m very happy with the level of tennis that I showed today,” Azarenka said after the match.
“Playing Anastasia here, she’s done such an amazing job, so I knew I had to come out playing my best tennis. Today I really stepped it up a level.”
Azarenka prevailed in dominant fashion in the opening set, dropping just two points on serve to make a statement to begin the first meeting between the two players in nearly four years.
However, the four-time champion in Monterrey would not be easily beaten, as she won three straight games after losing the first seven to lead by a break, capping the run with an emphatic break to love to lead 3-1.
From there, however, Pavlyuchenkova would win just one more game against a dialed-in Azarenka, who broke twice more and saved a break point in a key sixth game to move into her first semifinal since last year’s Miami Open.