Australian Samantha Stosur defeated Daniela Hantuchova for the second time in a fortnight on red clay, winning 7-6 (7/1), 7-5 in a match that was almost interrupted by a huge thunderclap in the skies over the Caja Magica. The noise caught Hantuchova off-guard, with the flinching Slovak asking to stop play.
However, with Stosur closing in on victory, the match went ahead, with the French Open finalist advancing on her second match point in just under two hours of play moments later.
Stosur lifted her clay record for this year to 6-2 as she closes in on her career-best in Madrid, a quarter-final last year.
“It was a tough match and I’m glad to get through. I was ready to play a third set if it had gone to that. I just tried to stay in the moment and play each point as it came,” Stosur said.
Later, the woman who denied her the French Open title, Francesca Schiavone, joined her in the next round, but the third seed had to go the distance to put out Italian compatriot Sara Errani 6-0, 2-6, 6-3. Czech 16th seed Petra Kvitova also advanced 6-3, 6-3 past South African Chanelle Scheepers, as Bethanie Mattek-Sands hammered fellow American Vania King 6-0, 6-2.
Aussie Jarmila Gajdosova dismissed 10th seed Agnieszka Radwanska 3-6, 6-3, 6-3.