Four matches were played at the Prague Open as the first round, delayed by rain, was completed and the second round began. The most notable result was Kristyna Pliskova knocking out second seed Petra Martic while third seed Elise Mertens, Tamara Zidansek and Laura Siegemund were also victorious. Ana Bogdan moved into the quarterfinals after getting a walkover from Lesia Tsurenko.
Pliskova races past Martic; Mertens also into quarterfinals
The Czech lefty, a finalist at this event in 2017, crafted a 6-1, 7-5 upset of Martic, winning nine of the first ten points in the match to race out to a 3-0 lead and she eventually finished off the 21-minute opening set by firing three consecutive aces.
The second set saw Pliskova save break points in the third game and Martic doing the same in the fourth. At 5-5, Pliskova finally broke on her fourth chance with a forehand winner and she served out the match with ease to reach the quarterfinals against Bogdan.
"I feel I'm playing better on clay each year", she said after striking 28 aces in the victory. "Everybody was saying I can't move and stuff, but I don't think it's like this - I have more time, so it's good for me that clay is not that fast. I can focus on my game."
Mertens moved into the last eight with a 6-4, 6-2 win over Camila Giorgi although it was the Itaoiqn who went up 2-0 before the Belgian clawed her way back, breaking a second time in the seventh game, which featured eight deuces, to go in front 4-3. She closed out the set three games later.
Breaking to go in front 2-1 in the second set, the third seed fended off four break points in the sixth game to move ahead 4-2 and some wayward backhands by Giorgi gave Mertens the double break. Serving for the match, she closed it out in style with an ace to seal her third quarterfinal of 2020.
"I knew I needed to play a good game to beat her", she assessed. "She played a couple of good matches last week so she kind of had that rhythm already. But I'm happy with my performance. I knew I had to play more aggressively, because she has those amazing strokes and also some mistakes.
"I had to stay focused to try to play my game and be sometimes more aggressive than her and really take the ball early."
Siegemund, Zidansek win rain-interrupted matches
Carried over from the previous day, Siegemund completed her comeback victory over Egyptian qualifier Mayar Sherif, who was leading 6-4, 0-4 before the German claimed a 4-6, 6-0, 6-1 to advance to a second round encounter with Sara Sorribes Tormo.
Zidansek split sets with Katerina Siniakova, winning the first 6-3 before dropping the second by the same scoreline before the rains came. She was sharp on the resumption of play, bagelling the Czech in the deciding set to move on to a meeting with Eugenie Bouchard.