Sharapova in Q/F of Stuttgart Open After Second Win Since Return

Only two former Australian Open winners are competing in the women’s draw this year.

Maria Sharapova advanced to the quarterfinals of the Stuttgart Open after beating Ekaterina Makarova 7-5, 6-1 on Thursday.

In her second match after a 15-month doping ban, Sharapova hit nine aces and held her serve throughout the match. She converted three of her four break points.

The five-time Grand Slam champion and former Number 1, who lost her ranking due to the suspension and entered the event on a wild card, will play Anett Kontaveit of Estonia for a place in the semifinals.

Also, Anastasija Sevastova beat sixth-seeded Johanna Konta 6-3, 7-5 to set up a quarterfinal match against Simona Halep.

Laura Siegemund, a finalist last year, defeated the 2009 champion Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-4, 6-3, and Carla Suarez-Navarro beat Elena Vesnina 6-2, 6-4.

Also Read: Sharapova Wins First Match After Return From Doping Ban, With Ease

(With inputs from AP)