Stuttgart - Maria Sharapova has reached the last eight of the Stuttgart WTA tournament on Thursday with a convincing 6-4, 6-3 win over fellow-Russian Anastasia Pavlychenkova.
It was in stark contrast to her struggles of the previous day when she needed three tie-breaks and almost three-and-a-half hours to defeat Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic in a first round tie.
Seeded sixth this year, Sharapova is aiming for a third straight title on the red clay of Stuttgart as the preparations for the French Open get fully underway.
The four-time Grand Slam champion looked solid enough on serve, with just five double-faults to eight by her opponent and she had Pavlychenkova under constant pressure with her booming returns.
Her opponent in the quarter-finals will be Polish top seed Agnieszka Radwanska who proved too good for Italan doubles specialist Roberta Vinci, winning 6-3, 6-2.
Results from the fourth day of the Stuttgart WTA tournament on Thursday (x denontes seeding):
Agnieszka Radwanska (POL x1) bt Roberta Vinci (ITA) 6-3, 6-2
Maria Sharapova (RUS x6) bt Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) 6-4, 6-3
Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP) bt Angelique Kerber (GER x4) 7-5, 6-4
Jelena Jankovic (SRB x5) bt Flavia Pennetta (ITA) 3-6, 6-2, 6-3
Ana Ivanovic (SRB x9) bt Julia Goerges (GER) 1-6, 6-2, 6-3