Svitolina sails into quarter-finals

Elina Svitolina charged into the last eight of the Australian Open with an assertive 6-3, 6-0 steamrolling of Czech qualifier Denisa Allertova.

The fourth-seed needed just 57 minutes to dispose of her less fancied opponent. It was a thoroughly dominant performance that was characterised by powerful serving and accurate groundstrokes from the back of the court.

“I am very pleased with the performance,” said Svitolina afterwards.

“It is not the first time I am going into the tournament as one of the favourites. It adds more pressure, but also gives you extra confidence.”

She now faces Elise Mertens in the last eight after the Belgian star overcame a stiff challenge from Petra Martic, eventually winning 7-6(5), 7-5.

Mertens, in her first-ever Grand Slam quarter-final, is on a nine-match win streak having won the Hobart warm-up event.

She is now the first Belgian to reach the last eight in Australia since Kim Clijsters in 2012.

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