Friday, February 15, 2013
Azarenka double bagels McHale, Serena one win away to reach #1
World number one Victoria Azarenka and second-ranked Serena Williams eased into the Qatar Open quarter-finals with dominant third-round victories on Thursday. Belarussian Azarenka, who won last month's Australian Open, demolished American Christina McHale 6-0 6-0 in just over an hour. If the 31-year-old Williams reaches the semifinals by beating seventh-seeded Petra Kvitova she will return to No. 1 for the first time in 2 1/2 years. Chris Evert was No. 1 in 1985 while just shy of her 31st birthday. Agnieszka Radwanska beat Ana Ivanovic 6-1, 7-6 (6) to reach the Qatar Open quarterfinals, where she was joined by Caroline Wozniacki on Thursday. Wozniacki beat recent Paris indoors champion Mona Barthel of Germany 7-6,6-3. Maria Sharapova, Samantha Stosur and Sara Errani are also among the third round winners yesterday.