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Simona Halep topples Wang Qiang to reach quarter-finals in Indian Wells

Simona Halep of Romania hits a forehand against Qiang Wang of China during Day 9 of BNP Paribas Open on March 13, 2018 in Indian Wells, California.
Image: Simona Halep advanced to the quarter-finals in Indian Wells on Tuesday

World No 1 and former champion Simona Halep cruised past Wang Qiang 7-5 6-1 to reach the quarter-finals of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells on Tuesday.

The Romanian needed just 76 minutes on the main stadium court to dispatch her practice partner Wang, winning 64 per cent of her first-serve points and breaking Wang's serve seven times.

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She is now an impressive 17-1 this season having already won a title in both singles and doubles in Shenzhen.

"I wasn't missing that much," said the 26-year-old, who showed no sign of the foot injury that forced her to withdraw from the Qatar Total Open in Doha last month and appears poised to regain the title she won in 2015. "I dominated a little bit more."

Halep will next face unseeded Petra Martic of Croatia who beat Czech Marketa Vondrousova 6-3 7-6 (7-4).

The biggest shock of the day saw Russian Daria Kasatkina defeat world No 2 Caroline Wozniacki 6-4 7-5 for her second straight victory against the Dane.

Wozniacki, who won her maiden Grand Slam title at the Australian Open in January, could have returned to the summit of the women's game with the title in the California desert but had her serve broken six times by her 20-year-old opponent.

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 on March 13, 2018 in Indian Wells, California.
Image: Daria Kasatkina knocked out world No 2 Caroline Wozniacki

"She outsmarted me today, which is fair enough," Wozniacki said. "But, you know, at least I tried, and I tried to do what I thought I needed to do out there today.

"I just couldn't execute as well as I wanted to."

Kasatkina will next meet Angelique Kerber after the German 10th seed eased past Caroline Garcia 6-1 6-1.

Fifth seed Karolina Pliskova ended teenage American Amanda Anisimova's run with a 6-1 7-6 (7-2) victory.

Karolina Pliskova of Czech Republic plays Amanda Anisimova during the BNP Paribas Open at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden on March 13, 2018 in Indian Wells, California
Image: Karolina Pliskova ended the run of junior US Open champion Anisimova

Junior US Open champion Anisimova, who is ranked 149th in the world, had already taken out ninth seed Petra Kvitova to become the first 16-year-old to reach the fourth round since Viktoriya Kutuzova in 2005.

But the 25-year-old Czech showed all her experience to set up a meeting with Naomi Osaka of Japan after she overcame unseeded Maria Sakkari 6-1 5-7 6-1.

You can watch the ATP Masters 1000 from Indian Wells on Sky Sports Arena and via the red button from 6pm on Wednesday. You can also watch it on Sky Sports Main Event.

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