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

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

Elina Svitolina

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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