'S-HERTOGENBOSCH, Netherlands -- CoCo Vandeweghe’s quest for a third Libéma Open title continued unabated on Wednesday, as the American No.1 seed powered past home nation favorite Arantxa Rus, 7-6(4), 6-3, to move into the quarterfinals.
Vandeweghe, who won the title in 's-Hertogenbosch in 2014 and 2016, needed to fend off a solid performance by Rus before overcoming the Dutchwoman in 93 minutes. The American prevailed by firing 26 winners, including 11 aces, outpacing her 23 unforced errors.
Vandeweghe reeled off the first seven points of the match before Rus was able to get her feet under her. However, the Dutch left-hander rebounded from an early break down to level the set at 2-2 after a slice backhand by the American found the net.
Rus then faced two break points at 3-3, but long service returns by the American on each of those chances cost Vandeweghe. Those would be the only break points to be had by either player during the final eight games of the opening set, as the big-hitting players inexorably moved into the tiebreak.
In the breaker, the American claimed a critical mini-break when Rus double faulted at 4-3. Two points later, an excellent serve by Vandeweghe forced a wide reply by Rus, giving the top seed two set points at 6-4. On the next point, Vandeweghe’s seventh ace of the set closed out the opener.
The second set began in the same manner as the first, with Vandweghe going up an early break for 2-0 before Rus quickly leveled the set at 2-2. Vandeweghe, who had been struggling with an ailment between sets, faced another break point at 3-3, but the American’s powerful serve got her out of trouble, extricating herself from the predicament with an ace before holding for 4-3.
Rus was not as lucky in the following game, after numerous errors from her forehand gave Vandeweghe triple break point. A wide backhand error by Rus allowed the American to break at love for 5-3, and serve for the match. Vandeweghe rolled through the final game with no fuss, ending the encounter with one final ace.
In the lead-off match on Centre Court, Aleksandra Krunic of Serbia became the first player to reach the quarterfinals of the 2018 Libéma Open with a 7-5, 6-2 victory in 98 minutes over another Dutch player, wild card Bibiane Schoofs.
Additionally, Russian qualifier Veronika Kudermetova reached the first WTA quarterfinal of her career with a 6-2, 2-6, 6-3 victory over former Top 10 player Belinda Bencic of Switzerland. Also, Slovakia's Viktoria Kuzmova upset No.6 seed Alison van Uytvanck of Belgium, 3-6, 7-6(4), 6-2.