INDIAN WELLS, California – Romanian Simona Halep, the 2nd seed, reached the round of 16 of the Indian Wells Masters on Sunday after eliminating Ukrainian Kateryna Kozlova 7-6 (3), 7-5.
Halep, currently No. 2 in the world ranking, a champion of this tournament in 2015 and finalist this year in Doha, took an hour and 50 minutes to beat a rival who did not give up until the end.
Halep will play in the next round against the winner of the match between Czech Marketa Vondrousova and Latvian Jelena Ostapenko, 22nd favorite.
China’s Qiang Wang, who beat Belgian Elise Mertens, the 17th favorite, in a three-hour intense duel, also advanced to the round of 16.
Wang reached her goal after winning 7-6 (4), 6-7 (4), 6-3, and she will next have to face Canadian Bianca Andreescu.
Spain’s Garbińe Muguruza, 20th seeded, was beating American Serena Williams 6-3, 1-0 before Serena retired from the encounter due to breathing problems, so Muguruza advanced to the round of 16 of the Masters 1000 in Indian Wells.
Muguruza, who began by losing the first three games of the first set, raised her game and then won seven consecutive games and leave Serena, the three-time champion of the tournament, with breathing problems.
After getting the attention of her coach and the tournament doctor, Serena, after losing the first game of the second set, sat down and began to have breathing problems, so she decided to retire.
When interviewed on the court, Muguruza said she wanted Serena to recover and see her back in competition “soon.”
The Spanish tennis player, who now has a 3-3 record in the clashes with Serena Williams, the world number 10, will face Dutch Kiki Bertens, seventh seeded, in the next round.
Earlier on Sunday, Switzerland’s Roger Federer eliminated Germany’s Peter Gojowczyk 6-1, 7-5 in an hour and nineteen minutes.
Federer, five-time champion in Indian Wells and finalist last year, had an overwhelming start but then was on fire in the second sleeve when Gojowczyk reached an advantage of 4-1 and the serve in his hand. The Swiss reacted in style and balanced the set and then break the service of his opponent in the eleventh game to close the match.