Reigning Wimbledon champion Garbiñe Muguruza won her second match in under 24 hours following a late night finish against Catherine "CiCi" Bellis, turning around to defeat Caroline Garcia for the second week in a row in Dubai.
David Kane
February 22, 2018

DUBAI, UAE - No.2 seed Garbiñe Muguruza recovered brilliantly from a late night second round, showing few signs of a let down as she dispatched French No.1 Caroline Garcia, 7-5, 6-2, to reach the semifinals at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.

"I'm very pleased," Muguruza said during the on-court interview. "It's very tough to play the same opponents all the time, and I'm happy that I won again. Last week was three sets, and this time, I was able to win it in two.

"I think it was a very good match, especially the first set," she continued in press. "I felt that whoever could win it, would win the match."

Garcia kept things close in the opening set, saving five break points in the first ten games to keep Muguruza on the back foot, but the two-time Grand Slam champion showed all of her mettle to win the final three games and take that momentum over the finish line after one hour and 48 minutes.

"I felt much better this match than the match we played in Doha. It's always difficult because we played almost in the same week twice. When you play a Top 10 player, and you beat second time in a row, it gives you a good sign that what I'm doing is right."

The win earns her a well-deserved break after playing until 2AM the night before against Catherine "CiCi" Bellis.

"It's tough. I was thinking about going straight to breakfast after I finished last night's match. But these things happen, and I need to be prepared, so I felt good today."

Garcia tried her hardest to force the issue with 15 winners, but was ultimately undone by 42 unforced errors; Mugurza, by contrast, kept her stats far cleaner with only 20 unforced errors and 10 winners.

Standing between Muguruza and a second straight final will be the winner of an upcoming all-Russian battle between BNP Paribas Open champion Elena Vesnina and Volvo Car Open winner Daria Kasatkina.

"I played once again Kasatkina before. Very difficult match. I think she always plays very good against the top players. She has good wins.

"Vesnina, I never played her. I will look forward to play against the players I never played also."

In the meantime, the Spaniard might be tempted to indulge the sweet tooth she discussed after the match.

"Whenever I want a treat, I go for sweets. I love to cook brownies, cupcakes. Whatever has sugar!"