By Anita Stahl
- All eight seeds advanced to quarter-finals
STANFORD, USA- Garbiñe Muguruza, Petra Kvitova, and Madison Keys headline Bank of the West Classic quarter-final in a triumph of seeding.
Garbiñe Muguruza  vs Ana Konjuh  H2H: First Meeting
There is no doubt Ana Konjuh is a superb tennis player. The 19-year-old Croation is ranked No. 20, made the round of 16 at Wimbledon this year, and played the quarter-finals of last year’s US Open. Still, when Garbiñe Muguruza is having a good day, is fully focused and wants the win, all the best players have trouble stopping her.
Considering the slump she experienced following her 2016 French Open win, however, commentators have speculated she might suffer again at lower tier tournaments until she comes out big for the next major. In her only match since Wimbledon Wednesday, Muguruza showed an aggressive, hungry side that would give Konjuh a great deal of trouble.
That said, Kayla Day may have a promising future ahead of her, but she did not significantly challenge Muguruza’s drive to win in the same way that Konjuh is certain to.
Prediction: Muguruza in three sets
Madison Keys  vs Lesia Tsurenko  H2H: 2-0
Madison Keys defeated Lesia Tsurenko at the 2015 Australian Open and in Birmingham two years before that. Neither has had much match play at Stanford. Keys received a bye in the first round and then only narrowly defeated qualifier Caroline Dolehide.
Keys put a positive spin on her struggles in that match and hopes to build on her ability to play her way out of tough situations, a critical mindset for a player trying to get back into a comfortable tour rhythm. Tsurenko was scheduled to play Maria Sharapova in the second round but received a walkover when Sharapova retired due to a left forearm injury.
Prediction: Keys in two sets
CiCi Bellis  vs. Petra Kvitova : First Meeting
Petra Kvitova entered the Bank of the West Classic with the modest ambition to get back onto the court and get match experience ahead of the US Open. In the 60 minutes she spent in the stadium so far, her relaxed demeanor and visible joy to be back on court did nothing to take away from the ruthless power of her ground strokes.
While player height is a statistic more commonly shared in other sports, when the balls fly like they do in Stanford, the five inches Kvitova has on CiCi Bellis certainly cannot hurt in the conditions that favor those with great reach who can put power behind the ball.
Prediction: Kvitova in two sets
CoCo Vandeweghe  vs Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova  H2H: 1-1
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova defeated CoCo Vandeweghe 6-3, 6-3 in the round of 16 at Wimbledon last year. Two years before that they met on hardcourt in Miami, where the American won 7-6(7), 7-5. While Pavlyuchenkova has had a successful season that earned her the slightly higher seed, Vandeweghe has an excellent track record at Stanford, the tournament where she made her first WTA final.
Prediction: Vandeweghe in three sets
The Stanford quarter-finals start on Friday at 12pm (8pm BST)
Main Image: Anita Stahl / AnitaCaptures.com
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