French Open: Pliskova, Halep book quarterfinal berths

Karolina Pliskova needed three sets to get past Paraguay's Veronica Cepede Royg while Simona Halep cruised to the quarterfinal with a 6-1, 6-1 win over Carla Suarez-Navarro.

Karolina Pliskova advanced to the quarterfinal with a 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 victory.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Czech world No. 2 Karolina Pliskova needed three sets to get past Paraguay's Veronica Cepede Royg and book a quartefinals spot at the French Open.

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Royg, world No. 97 had only won one match at the majors before this year's Roland Garros but she was the better player in the first set with Pliskova hitting just four winners.

But the second seed steadied the ship to go through 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Pliskova next faces 28th seed Caroline Garcia who won her all-French grudge match with Alize Cornet 6-2, 6-4.

The two compatriots have been involved in a recent feud over the Fed Cup and are barely on speaking terms.

However, they exchanged smiles and a warm embrace at the net at the end of the tie.

Title favourite and 2014 runner-up Simona Halep trounced Spain's Carla Suarez-Navarro 6-1, 6-1 to make the last eight without dropping a set or breaking sweat.

Third seed Halep, who like Pliskova can become the new world No. 1 if she wins the title, claimed her first victory on clay in six attempts against the Spaniard.

"I played my best match of the tournament. I served well and opened up the court," said Halep.

The 25-year-old Halep will tackle Ukraine's fifth seed Elina Svitolina for a semifinal place.

The two met in the Rome final on the eve of Roland Garros when Halep was beaten and suffered an ankle injury which threatened her appearance in Paris.

Svitolina reached the quarterfinals for the second time, ending the dream run of world No. 290 Petra Martic with a 4-6, 6-3, 7-5 win.

However, Martic, bidding to become only the 10th qualifier to make the last eight in Paris threw away a golden chance for victory.

The 26-year-old led 5-2 in the final set before Svitolina rallied to race away with the last five games.

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