Turkey’s Cagla Buyukakcay has reached her second quarter-finals in the BMW Malaysian Open after clinching a 7-5, 6-3 victory over top seed slayer Chang Kai-chen of Chinese Taipei in the BMW Malaysian Open 2016 tournament at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club (KLGCC).
The world No.128Cagla, who is making her fifth appearance in Kuala Lumpur, also made it to last eight two years ago.
Then, she created history by becoming the first ever Turkish player to reach the last eight on the WTA Tour.
The 26-year-old will now be aiming to go a step further when she takes on sixth seed, Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard tomorrow.
Cagla was pleased to get the better of the in-form Kai-chen for the first time, having lost all of their two previous meetings – in Taipei (2011) and Pattaya (2012).
“Kai-chen has beaten the top seed (Roberta Vinci) and I know she’s going to hit the ball really well against me, but I was ready for that,” said Cagla.
After getting used to playing under the tough humid conditions the past few days, Cagla believes her game has grown stronger as the tournament progressed.
“I’m enjoying it at the moment,” she said.
“While it’s really humid here which makes it tough to focus on every ball, it actually also motivates you to fight for every ball and rally.
“I have given my best in the tournament so far and quite happy with my game.”
And Cagla is unfazed by her more illustrious opponent Bouchard, who’s a former world No.5
She said: “Eugenie is a great player – a Wimbledon finalist (in 2014) and is already a successful at very young age. Sure it’s going to be another tough match but I will prepare thoroughly with my coach and try to enjoy the moment.”
Second seed Elina Svitolina fended off a spirited challenge from Japanese qualifier Risa Ozaki before claiming a 6-1, 3-6, 6-0 win to deny her opponent a first ever quarter-final appearance on the WTA Tour.
“My back was sore after the second set from the injury I had sustained at the Australian Open. I was a little worried and a little cautious. But everything was okay in the third set,” said Elina who took a medical timeout after the second set.
“My coach (Ian Hughe) told me to keep calm and not to do anything special but just play my normal game. I am confident I will not have any issues with my back for tomorrow’s match. I will do some physiotherapy and am confident will be good for tomorrow’ tie,” added Elina.
The world No.19 Ukrainian will meet Kristina Kucova, who ranked 120 rungs lower, for a place in the semis.
In the doubles, Thai-Chinese combination Varatchaya Wongteanchai and Yang Zhaoxuan have booked their place in the last four after ousting Japan’s Eri Hozumi-Miyu Kato 6-2, 6-1.