Svitolina favourite as Osaka, Pliskova crash out: Olympics women’s singles quarter-final line-up
With just three of the top 10 seeds remaining, the Ukrainian is the highest-ranked player left as the women’s singles reaches the quarter-final stage in Tokyo
The shocks continued at the Olympics on Tuesday as No 2 seed Naomi Osaka and Wimbledon runner-up Karolina Pliskova were both sent packing, leaving the women’s singles quarter-final line-up as follows:
Pavlyuchenkova (13) – Bencic (9)
Rybakina (15) – Muguruza (7)
Giorgi – Svitolina (4)
Badosa – Vondrousova
With only three of the top 10 seeds remaining, the door is open for any of the remaining eight women to claim the gold medal but Elina Svitolina is the favourite, having beaten Maria Sakkari 5-7, 6-3, 6-4 on Tuesday to reach the last eight.
The Ukrainian will meet Camila Giorgi, who stunned Pliskova 6-4, 6-2 and Svitolina knows all about the Italian’s power, having lost to her on grass in 2017.
The bottom half of the draw is rounded out by Paola Badosa and Marketa Vondrousova, the Spaniard and Czech going head to head for the second time, Badosa having edged her opponent out when they met in the fourth round of the French Open.
Vondrousova, though, will be on a high after crushing Osaka 6-1, 6-4 and the left-hander will feel this could be her event.
Pavlyuchenkova meets Bencic for semi-final spot
Roland-Garros runner-up Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova will play Belinda Bencic for a place in the last four, the two women knowing that they will probably never have a better chance to win an Olympic medal.
Switzerland’s Bencic leads their head to head battles 5-2, but the Russian has been enjoying a brilliant summer, reaching the final at Roland-Garros and coming close to her first Grand Slam title.
Two-time Grand Slam champion Garbine Muguruza will play Elena Rybakina in the remaining quarter-final and with all the upsets that came in the first three rounds, the Spaniard has experience on her side and her eyes focused on gold.