Serena reaches quarters in Beijing

8:58 AM, Oct 3, 2013   |    comments
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Beijing, China ( - High-flying world No. 1 superstar Serena Williams highlighted Thursday's third-round winners at the $5 million China Open.

The 2004 Beijing champion topped 2005 titlist Maria Kirilenko 7-5, 7-5 on the hardcourts at the National Tennis Center.

The reigning U.S. and French Open queen Williams is now a brilliant 79-4 this year and seeking her 10th title of 2013. Her quarterfinal opponent on Friday will be sixth-seeded former world No. 1 and 2010 Beijing champ Caroline Wozniacki.

Williams is 5-1 lifetime against Wozniacki

Meanwhile, third-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska routed Slovenian qualifier Polona Hercog 6-0, 6-2 and Wozniacki handled 11th-seeded American Sloane Stephens 6-3, 6-1 on Day 6. Radwanska was the China Open champion two years ago and runner-up in 2009.

In other third-round action, seventh-seeded Angelique Kerber topped 10th- seeded Italian Roberta Vinci 6-2, 6-4, eighth-seeded former world No. 1 Jelena Jankovic destroyed Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro 6-0, 6-0 in 59 minutes, and Czech Lucie Safarova outlasted German Andrea Petkovic 6-4, 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-2). Jankovic titled here in 2008 and was the Beijing runner-up in 2007. Petkovic was a finalist in 2011.

Friday's other quarters will pit Radwanska against Kerber, fourth-seeded Chinese favorite Li Na versus ninth-seeded Czech slugger Petra Kvitova, and Jankovic against Safarova. Kvitova titled in Tokyo last week by beating Kerber in an all-left-handed final.

The 2013 China Open titlist will collect $860,000.

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