Simona Halep's pursuit of a maiden grand slam title remains on track after the world number one defeated Naomi Osaka in the fourth round of the Australian Open.
A two-time French Open runner-up, Halep reached the quarter-finals at Melbourne Park for the third time thanks to a 6-3 6-2 victory in 79 minutes on Monday.
The Romanian showed no signs of the ankle injury she suffered in the opening round, despite coming off a gruelling marathon against Lauren Davis in her previous tie, an encounter that last three hours and 45 minutes, equalling the record for the most games played (48) in a women's match at the tournament.
In cool but breezy conditions on Margaret Court Arena, Osaka – who eliminated local favourite and 18th seed Ashleigh Barty in the previous round – showcased her raw power against Halep, but she proved wasteful.
Osaka had five break-point opportunities in the first set, including four in the sixth game, however, Halep – boasting a 2-0 head-to-head record – had all the answers.
After continually fending off the big-hitting Osaka, Halep then did what her opponent could not, making the most of her chances as she broke.
Halep consolidated for a 5-3 lead before closing out the first set on Osaka's serve.
With a healthy Japanese contingent cheering her on inside the arena, Osaka continued playing her shots and she managed to break Halep in the opening game of the second set.
But that was as good as it got for Osaka, Halep using her wealth of experience to break straight back and then secure a double break.
Osaka gave up her serve again in the final game as Halep cruised into the last eight, where she will face either Karolina Pliskova or Barbora Strycova.
Halep  bt Osaka 6-3 6-2
Halep – 22/18
Osaka – 22/31
Halep – 2/1
Osaka – 5/1
BREAK POINTS WON
Halep – 5/7
Osaka – 1/7
FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Halep – 66
Osaka – 62
PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Halep – 65/55
Osaka – 59/35
Halep – 70
Osaka – 55