MIAMI, FL, USA - In-form Acapulco champion Wang Yafan scored her latest milestone at the Miami Open on Friday.
In her fifth career match against a Top 10 player, the Chinese No.4 scored her first win with a 6-2, 6-4 upset of No.6 seed Elina Svitolina.
"I'm really excited," Wang said after the match. "I didn't think too much for this match, win or lose. I just tried to enjoy and play my best tennis.
"I know she's Top 10, so for me, there was nothing to lose."
In her first career meeting against the World No.5, Wang was quick out of the gates and built a 0-40 lead en route to breaking the Ukrainian No.1 in the first game.
The World No.50 broke twice more en route to winning the opener, dropping her own serve against the prowess of Svitolina's return just once along the way, before winning four of the last five games to seal the hallmark win.
"I didn't think before I could play like this, the start to this year," the Acapulco champion said. "I'm happy I can start like this, and I think that I can play better this year, like now."
Svitolina appeared to work momentum away from Wang early in the second set, as she won three straight games from an early break deficit, and took her first lead of the match with a love hold for 3-2.
However, Wang came through a tough test on serve in the eighth game, needing three game points through deuce to level at 4-4, and sealed the decisive break of the World No.5's serve in the next game.
A year ago, Wang had a stunning run to the round of 16 in Miami as a qualifier, where she upset Alison Riske and Carla Suárez Navarro in third-set tiebreaks before nearly upsetting Angelique Kerber.
Twelve months later, she's solidly in the Top 100, has a WTA title to her name, and has a chance to take out another notable seed in South Florida: up next, Wang will take on Australian Open semifinalist and No.25 seed Danielle Collins, who edged 16-year-old American wildcard Whitney Osuigwe, 7-6(5), 6-0.
"Last year, I played good here, and the first time I made the Top 100 was here. I like Miami," Wang said. "It's new courts, it's nice, everything's perfect.