WTA: Mattek-Sands too powerful for Hsieh in Kuala Lumpur


Sat, Mar 02, 2013 - Page 20

The US’ Bethanie Mattek-Sands proved too much for Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei at the BMW Malaysian Open yesterday, with the American player defeating the defending champion 7-5, 6-2 to advance to the semi-finals today.

In other play, Japan’s Ayumi Morita edged closer to winning her first ever WTA title.

The fourth seed had to dig deep in the quarter-final yesterday before getting the better of qualifier Luksika Kumkhum. The Thai gave as good as she got, before Morita stepped up through the gears to win 6-7 (7-9), 6-4, 6-1.

“I’m very happy to be in my fourth career semi-finals. I hope to continue doing my best and try to go further this time,” she said.

Morita, who ranks 55 in the world, will meet 127th-ranked Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic in today’s semi-final.

The Japanese player calls Malaysia her “second home” after playing in the tournament since the inaugural event in 2010.

That year she also reached the semi-final, while in 2011 and last year she only managed to reach the last eight.

Meanwhile, Pliskova eliminated Austrian Patricia Mayr-Achleitner 7-5, 6-1 to set-up the meeting with Morita, while Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic topped Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-3 7-6 (7/5) to earn her place in the next round.

In the doubles, Taiwan’s Chang Kai-chen and Japan’s Shuko Aoyama defeated Pliskova and her sister, Kristnya Pliskova, 6-2 6-1.