Top seed Ashleigh Barty has defeated Garbine Muguruza in three sets to reach the semi-finals of the Qatar Open after hitting heights of perfection in the opening set.
Barty beat Australian Open finalist Muguruza 6-1 6-7 (7-4) 6-2 to set up a meeting with Czech Republic's Petra Kvitova in the last four in Doha.
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Though the Australian had beaten the Spaniard twice before, it was a tight contest before the world No.1 broke away in the third set.
Barty, 23, claimed the first set in just 25 minutes after a first-serving masterclass.
The Aussie did not drop a single point when her first serve was successful, winning all 11 points in a flawless and rare feat.
Muguruza broke in the second set to lead 4-2, before Barty broke back immediately to force a tie break.
The Spaniard won the tie break 7-4 to send the contest to a third set.
Barty sets up another showdown with Petra Kvitova
Barty broke the world No.16's serve three times in the final set to storm to a 6-2 victory.
The Aussie's semi-final opponent Kvitova, who defeated Muguruza in the 2018 final, beat Ons Jabeur 7-6 (7-2) 7-6 (7-4) in their last eight contest.
Petra like: everything was going so well until you showed up pic.twitter.com/R9Cl5E1dxz— RICKKY_THAT'S ME (@rickky_thatsme) February 27, 2020
Barty and Kvitova are locked at four wins apiece, having met on eight previous occasions.
However, the momentum going into their semi-final clash is fairly with Barty, who has won the last four consecutive matches against the Czech.
Barty, playing in her first tournament since the Australian Open, had advanced to the quarter-finals via a walkover after her opponent Elena Rybakina withdrew due to a leg injury.