STUTTGART, Germany - Wildcard Laura Siegemund continued her love affair with her hometown tournament on Thursday, as the World No. 49 upset No.8 seed Svetlana Kuznetsova, 6-4, 6-3 to reach the quarterfinals for the second straight year.
Last year's runner-up in Stuttgart, Siegemund recorded her sixth career win against a top 10 opponent - with five of those having come on clay and four inside the Porsche Arena.
In a lengthy opening set where six of the 10 games went to deuce, Siegemund pushed out to a 4-1 lead courtesy of a pair of breaks in the first and fifth games.
Kuznetsova's lone game of the first five was a break in Siegemund's marathon first service game, which saw seven deuces as the Russian finally broke through on her seventh opportunity.
Though Kuznetsova broke serve for a second time in the sixth game, neither player had an opportunity to score another for the duration, as Siegemund's early momentum helped her grab a one set lead in 72 minutes.
In contrasting fashion, the German sprinted out to a 4-0 lead in the second set, as the No.8 seed did not get on the board until she was forced to save two break points in the fifth game.
Though Kuznetsova made a late push, breaking as Siegemund served for the match at 5-2, she was unable to convert on four game points in the ninth game and double faulted on the German's third match point.
Also scoring a top 10 victory in the second round on Thursday was Anastasija Sevastova, who defeated No.6 seed Johanna Konta, 6-4, 7-5, to reach her first-ever quarterfinal in Stuttgart.
The Latvian broke Konta's serve five times in the one hour, 22-minute victory, served six aces and won a commanding 71 percent of points behind her first serve.
"I played pretty aggressively, I didn't let her play her game," Sevastova said. "I returned well, played aggressively on my serve and just stayed in there."
A clinical performance from Sevastova from the baseline saw her strike 26 winners to just 16 unforced errors, as Konta remained even with 19 in each column.
The first set saw five breaks in the first six games, but Sevastova's third break against the Konta serve for 4-2 proved to be the deciding one in the opener. The Latvian saved some of her best serving for when she needed it most, as she three consecutive aces and an unreturnable en route to wrap up the opening set in just over 30 minutes.
"Clay is a bit slower, so I have more time," Sevastova said. "I can put the angles, and use my variety better, I think. I can return well and I see the game; I grew up on [clay], to play these angles.
"Here, it's quite different clay, it's also indoors and you never play like that. On clay, I would say it's more fun, but it's also more physical."
Konta started strongly in the second set, breaking serve to lead 3-1, but handed the break back to Sevastova in the fifth game. Both players remained largely unchallenged on serve in the next five games, with only one going to deuce as the set reached its late stages.
Nonetheless, Sevastova conjured up some of her best tennis when she needed it the most, breaking the Konta serve at 5-5, and striking two more aces in the final game to wrap up her first top 10 win of 2017.