Luxembourg Open: Heather Watson through to quarter-finals

Heather Watson

Britain’s Heather Watson is through to the the quarter-finals of the Luxembourg Open after beating Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit in straight sets.

Watson, 25, beat the third seed 6-4 6-4 in one hour and 24 minutes.

The British number number two will play Elise Mertens in the last eight after Belgium’s world number 38 saw off American Madison Brengle.

Britain’s Naomi Broady plays her last-16 match at 14:30 BST against 2014 Wimbledon finalist Sabine Lisicki.

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Maria Sharapova knocked out of Kremlin Cup by Magdalena Rybarikova

Maria Sharapova and Magdalena Rybarikova shake hands after their match att he Kremlin Cup

Maria Sharapova has been knocked out of the Kremlin Cup in the first round, two days after winning her first tournament since 2015.

The Russian, 30, was beaten 7-6 (7-3) 6-4 by Slovakia’s Magdalena Rybarikova in her fifth match in seven days.

It was Sharapova’s first tour appearance in Moscow in 10 years and came after she won the Tianjin Open on Sunday.

The win in China was her first title since serving a 15-month doping ban.

Sharapova, ranked 57 in the world, was given a wildcard for the Kremlin Cup, which was her eighth event since returning to the WTA Tour in April.

Wimbledon semi-finalist Rybarikova, ranked 26, reached a tour final herself on Sunday, losing to Barbora Strycova in the Ladies Linz tournament in Austria.

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Rafael Nadal pulls out of Swiss Indoors Basel with knee injury

Rafael Nadal

World number one Rafael Nadal has pulled out of next week’s Swiss Indoors Basel tournament with a knee injury.

The Spaniard, 31, says he is suffering from an “over-stressing of the knee”, and has been advised by his doctor to take time off.

He says he was carrying the injury when he played in Sunday’s Shanghai Masters final, where he lost to Roger Federer.

“It is time for some rest,” said Nadal, who has won six titles this season and played 75 matches.

His absence gives Switzerland’s Federer the chance to make up ground in the battle for the world number one position.

Nadal’s return to the top of the rankings in August was the first time he had been there since 2014, having had a series of knee and wrist injuries.

Meanwhile, Maria Sharapova has been knocked out of the Kremlin Cup in the first round.

The 30-year-old Russian was beaten 7-6 (7-3) 6-4 by Slovakia’s Magdalena Rybarikova in her fifth match in seven days.

It was the former world number one’s first Tour appearance in Moscow in a decade and came after she won the Tianjin Open on Sunday.

The win in China was her first title since serving a 15-month doping ban and lifted her 29 places in the world rankings to 57th.

Sharapova was picked as a wildcard for the Kremlin Cup, which was her eighth event since returning to the Tour in April.

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Watson reaches Luxembourg Open second round

Heather Watson

Britain’s Heather Watson beat Yanina Wickmayer 6-2 6-1 in just 64 minutes to reach the Luxembourg Open second round.

It was the 25-year-old’s first main draw tournament win since Wimbledon.

The 25-year-old, ranked 81 in the world, converted all four of her break points and won more than half the points on her opponent’s serve.

She will face third seed Anett Kontaveit next with the Estonian victorious when the pair met in April’s Biel Bienne Open.

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Nadal beats Cilic to reach Shanghai Masters final

Rafael Nadal

World number one Rafael Nadal produced a masterful display to overcome Croat Marin Cilic 7-5 7-6 (7-3) and reach the Shanghai Masters final.

Cilic, who will rise to a career-best fourth, created three set points after early pressure from the Spaniard, who won the opener in 67 minutes.

Nadal, seeking a seventh title of 2017, was broken twice in the second but won a fine match in two hours 11 minutes.

Roger Federer contests the second semi-final with Juan Martin del Potro.

In the first semi-final, the opening game provided much entertainment as it fluctuated during a 10-minute spell in which Cilic had served at 40-0.

Cilic’s first two service games comprised 30 points, while Nadal conceded only three points in his first four games on serve.

But Cilic, the 2014 US Open champion and beaten finalist at Wimbledon this year, gradually imposed himself on proceedings and a crunching forehand down the line from the back of the court earned two break points.

He was unable to take those as Nadal demonstrated his powers of resolve and the Croat, having saved six break points, eventually conceded the only break of the set.

US Open champion Nadal broke in the third game of the second set after Cilic netted two volleys but then lost his own serve as his drop volley also went into the net.

Cilic saved three break points in game nine but then a stunning whipped Nadal forehand down the line on the run created a break that he duly seized.

Cilic was not finished, however, and after saving a match point he dispatched more powerful shots from the baseline to break again.

Nadal, bidding to win the Shanghai title for the first time, calmly served out to force a tie-break and the Spaniard completed his fifth victory in six matches against Cilic, his 16th consecutive victory in all tournaments.

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Sharapova beats Peng to reach Tianjin Open final

Breaking news

Former world number one Maria Sharapova reached her first WTA final since returning from a drugs ban as she beat Shuai Peng 6-3 6-1 at the Tianjin Open.

Sharapova, 30, came back to the tour in April following a 15-month ban for taking the banned drug meldonium.

The Russian took 78 minutes to beat third seed Peng and maintained her record of not dropping a set this week.

She will play 19-year-old world number 102 Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus, who beat Italy’s Sara Errani 6-1 6-3.

More to follow.

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Nadal reaches Shanghai semi-finals with 15th straight win

Rafael Nadal

World number one Rafael Nadal beat Grigor Dimitrov to register his 15th consecutive win and reach the semi-finals of the Shanghai Masters.

The Spaniard won 6-4 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 in two hours and 35 minutes.

Nadal, who has never won the title in Shanghai, will face fourth seed Marin Cilic in the last four.

Briton Jamie Murray and Brazil’s Bruno Soares reached the doubles semi-finals with a 6-1 7-6 (8-6) victory over Raven Klaasen and Rajeev Ram.

The victory ensured that the pair, who have won two Grand Slams and six titles together, qualified for the ATP World Tour Finals in London next month.

Top seed Nadal is chasing a tour-leading seventh title this season, and beat Bulgaria’s Dimitrov for the second time in a week following his semi-final victory at the China Open.

The Spaniard, 31, breezed through the first set but was unable to break Dimitrov in the second, and the Bulgarian was strong in the tie-break to force a deciding set.

Dimitrov, ranked eighth in the world, had break point early in the third set, but Nadal saved it with a backhand volley before winning three consecutive games.

World number five Cilic secured his place in the semi-finals with a routine victory over Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas.

The Croat, who has yet to drop a set in this year’s tournament, served 10 aces as he registered a 6-3 6-4 win.

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Tianjin Open: Maria Sharapova beats Stefanie Voegele to reach semi-final

Maria Sharapova

Maria Sharapova reached her first semi-final since returning from a doping ban as she beat Swiss qualifier Stefanie Voegele at the Tianjin Open.

The Russian took one hour and five minutes to beat Voegele, ranked 196th in the world, 6-3 6-1 in China.

Sharapova was broken in the first game of the match but hit back straight away, using her forehand to break down her opponent.

She will face either Sara Sorribes Tormo or third seed Peng Shuai next.

Sharapova, who returned from a 15-month ban in April, has yet to drop a set in Tianjin.

After taking the first set with a love hold, the world number 86 won five consecutive games to take control of the second, before sealing the match with a forehand winner.

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