Svitolina joins Kenin on sidelines as top two seeds go out in Abu Dhabi

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The upsets continued in Abu Dhabi on Monday as Sofia Kenin and Elina Svitolina both saw their hopes ended at the quarter-final stage.

The top two seeds are out at the WTA 500 in Abu Dhabi after Elina Svitolina went the same way as Sofia Kenin, losing in the quarter-finals on Monday.

No 1 seed Kenin, who will defend her Australian Open title next month, went down 2-6, 6-2, 6-0 to Greece’s Maria Sakkari, while No 2 seed Svitolina was edged out 5-7, 6-3, 7-6(3) by Veronika Kudermetova of Russia.

Sakkari said she had been working hard on her game in the off-season.

“I have a lot of power and I have been using it the right way,” she said. “Up until last year I couldn’t control my power so I had to take a bit of pace off because if I was hitting too hard I was missing many shots. So I think I’ve found a way and I’ve found my real pace on the court.”

Sakkari will play Aryna Sabalenka in the semi-finals while Kudermetova’s reward is a clash with 18-year-old Marta Kostyuk of Ukraine.

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