BEIJING, Oct. 6 (Xinhua) -- Second seed Vera Zvonareva of Russia survived scare in the third round of the China Open, rallying to beat compatriot Maria Kirilenko to reach the last eight here on Wednesday.
Zvonareva was one of the hottest players in the WTA tour this season, making into the finals of Wimbledon and U.S. Open, and the 26-year-old enjoyed a 4-0 clean head-to-head record against the 26th ranked Kirilenko.
However, Kirilenko was quite efficient in the first set, converting both of her break chances to edge Zvonareva 7-5.
"I think she started off really well in the first set, and she was very aggressive and I think I was a little bit impatient. Sometimes my shot choices weren't as good as I wanted in the moment, so I was making a little bit too many unforced errors in the first set," said Zvonareva after the match.
The second set remained tight and both of the Russians seemed invincible in their service games. Zvonareva capitalized her sole break point to clinch the set 6-4.
"I think against such a great player as Maria, if you give her a little bit of unforced errors, she will take the opportunity, and of course, you know, I lost the first set, but the second set I was just trying to keep going for my shots but being a little bit more patient and still take more chances and be a little bit more aggressive at times and just fighting for every point. I was able to turn that around, I'm very happy," the second seed added.
As it came to the final set, the 23-year-old Kirilenko lost control of her rhythm, threw in the towel soon in 6-2.
"Then in the third set I felt like it was a little bit physically tough for her, and I was a little bit more consistent and more aggressive, so I made it very difficult for her in the third set," said Zvonareva.
Zvonareva will face the winner between Vera Dushevina of Russia and Italian 5th seed Francesca Schiavone, who claimed the title in the French Open.