BEIJING, China - No.3 seed Elina Svitolina scored a comfortable win against Wuhan finalist Ashleigh Barty to make her way into the third round of the China Open.
Last week in Wuhan, Barty knocked out three Top 10 players to reach her first Premier 5 final, but she didn’t seem to have much in the tank against Svitolina, falling 6-2, 6-4 in an hour and 15 minutes.
“I knew that she was quite confident, so I needed to break that confidence early in the match,” Svitolina said in her post-match press conference. “I needed to play very well from the start and stay very focused. In the end, I’m very happy with the way I handled the match and to win in straight sets.”
The pair started out their second-round clash by trading breaks of serve, but that first Svitolina service game would be the only time Barty would have an inroad on her opponent’s serve.
Up against against one of the most in-form players on tour in Svitolina, who owns five WTA titles in 2017, Barty found her powerful shots neutralized by the Ukrainian speed and retrieving.
After losing her serve in the opening game, Svitolina recovered with aplomb. She broke once more a few games later at 3-2, and dropped just three points in total in the rest of her service games to close out the first set.
The second set continued to be one-way traffic for the No.3 seed; Svitolina lost just four points on her serve in the set, and broke the Australian twice to comfortably close out the match and take the last spot into the third round.
Through to the round of 16 for the second straight year, Svitolina will face Elena Vesnina for a spot in the quarterfinals.