Schiavone through in Rio, Kovinic fails to reach semis


Italian Francesca Schiavone overcame a stern challenge as she defeated qualifier Cindy Burger in three sets at the Rio Open quarter-finals.

After dropping the first set to the Dutchwoman, Schiavone rallied to win 3-6 7-6 (8-6) 6-3 in two hours, 36 minutes on Friday.

Schiavone broke eight times and saved two of her own as she reached the final four of a WTA tournament for the first time since 2014.

Standing in the way of Schiavone and a final berth is Croatian Petra Martic.

Martic also survived a two-hour battle as she upstaged sixth-seeded Spaniard Lara Arruabarrena 6-4 5-7 7-5.

Arruabarrena was not the only seed to fall, with Danka Kovinic also ousted in the quarter-finals.

The Montenegrin third seed lost out to wildcard Sorana Cirstea 6-1 6-2.

Next up for Cirstea is American Shelby Rogers, who outlasted local hope Paula Cristina Goncalves 6-2 5-7 6-3.