Zakopalova Surprises Begu, Moves Into QFs
Published September 21, 2011 12:00
SEOUL, South Korea - Klara Zakopalova continued her love affair with the Hansol Korea Open on Wednesday, putting on a dominating performance for a 61 61 upset of the tournament's No.7 seed, Irina-Camelia Begu.
Zakopalova, who reached the 11th and most recent WTA final of her career at the International-level tournament one year ago, needed just 53 minutes for the straight set victory over the big-serving Begu, Romania's No.1 player.
"It was very windy today and I expected a much tougher match, but I'm of course happy to win," Zakopalova said. "I did well given the conditions."
Last year, Zakopalova beat the likes of Julia Goerges, Dinara Safina and Nadia Petrova to reach the finals here, where she finished runner-up to Alisa Kleybanova. "I have a lot of fans here in Korea, I don't know why!" Zakopalova commented. "I feel good here. I had a good week here last year, and I hope I can continue to play well and have another good week here this year."
Zakopalova is through to her seventh WTA quarterfinal of the year. She has already had two semifinal finishes (Hobart, Budapest) and four more quarterfinal finishes (Doha, Marbella, Estoril and Palermo). She has now equalled her personal best for most quarterfinals in a season, also making seven in 2004.
Zakopalova could face No.2 seed Marion Bartoli in the quarterfinals, if Bartoli gets past Vania King later on Wednesday. The two have split their head-to-head series, 2-2, including a 1-1 head-to-head record so far this year.
"Bartoli is a big fighter and very experienced," the 29-year-old Czech said. "If I play against her I have to run a lot, serve well and basically do everything right. I know her game. I know I have to do my best to have a good result."
Following Zakopalova into the last eight shortly afterwards was Slovakia's Dominika Cibulkova, who edged Yaroslava Shvedova in a tie-break in the first set when the Kazakh qualifier had to stop with an adductor strain. Cibulkova had three set points at 5-3 but ended up scoring a 76(4) retirement victory.