No.2 seed Agnieszka Radwanska was ruthless in her second round match at the Tianjin Open, sweeping aside hometown favorite Wang Qiang, 6-1, 6-1. Hoping to nab one of the four remaining spots for the WTA Finals in Singapore, the Pole won 75% of her first serve points and saved all five break points faced to capture the win in just under an hour.
"I didn't really know her before, but for the first match, it was solid, really, from the beginning," Radwanska said in her post-match press conference. "It looks like an easy match, but I had to do everything during the match; it wasn't as easy as the score looks, but I guess in the key moments, I was making the right shots."
The Pole is currently in the Top 8 on the Road To Singapore standings, with a chance to qualify for a seventh berth at the WTA Finals should she win the title. Reaching the semifinals in Singapore in 2014, Radwanska admitted that a repeat appearance at the prestigious year-end event is at the forefront of her mind.
"I'm trying everything to get to Singapore, so I will do everything in my power to win here, and we'll see."
Radwanska will next face WTA Rising Star Elizaveta Kulichkova for a place in the semifinals. The Russian teenager has reached four WTA quarterfinals in her first full season on the tour, and was similarly efficient in the first set of her second round against compatriot, Evgeniya Rodina, before closing out a tense conclusion to win, 6-2, 7-5.
Wildcard Duan Ying-Ying also came through on Thursday, recovering from a set down to defeat qualifier Lyudmyla Kichenok. The Ukrainian was coming off a career-best win over top seed and reigning US Open champion Flavia Pennetta in the first round, but despite winning the first set in a tie-break, Duan proved too strong to win, 6-7(5), 6-2, 6-4.
Duan, who defeated Eugenie Bouchard in the first round of this year's Wimbledon Championships, next plays WTA Rising Star Danka Kovinic, who also struggled through a tough three-setter against No.6 seed Teliana Pereira. Ultimately, the Montenegro native overcame a second set blip to upset her higher-ranked opponent, 6-2, 5-7, 6-1.