Rafael Nadal, Maria Sharapova reach Australian Open quarterfinals

Rafael Nadal, Maria Sharapova reach Australian Open quarterfinals
Maria Sharapova defeated Peng Shuai, 6-3, 6-0, on Sunday to advance to the Australian Open quarterfinals. (Greg Wood / AFP / Getty Images)

Second-seeded Maria Sharapova is through to the Australian Open quarterfinals after a 6-3, 6-0 victory over Peng Shuai on Sunday, setting up another Grand Slam tournament meeting with Eugenie Bouchard.

In men's singles, No. 3 Rafael Nadal defeated No. 14 Kevin Anderson, 7-5, 6-1, 6-4, in a fourth-round match.


Peng, playing with her usual two-handed forehand and backhand strokes, broke Sharapova's serve on her fifth breakpoint chance in the seventh game. But Sharapova won the next two games to take the first set in 39 minutes before dominating the second.

Sharapova plays the seventh-seeded Bouchard in the quarterfinals, a replay of their French Open semifinal last year. Sharapova won that match, after dropped the opening set, on the way to winning the title. Sharapova is 3-0 against Bouchard.

Bouchard won nine of the first 10 games in her fourth-round match against Irina-Camelia Begu, but lost seven of the next nine to be pushed to a third set for the first time in the tournament.

After serving double-fault on set point to end the second, Bouchard took a short break before returning to complete a 6-1, 5-7, 6-2 victory against Begu.

"I gave myself a good, long hard look in the mirror," Bouchard explained of her brief absence from Rod Laver Arena. "I said, 'Genie, this is unacceptable.' I really kind of kicked myself in the butt a little bit."

In another fourth-round match, No. 10 Ekaterina Makarova had a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Julia Goerges to reach the quarterfinals, where she'll play the winner of a Sunday night match between No. 3 Simona Halep and Yanina Wickmayer.

Nick Kyrgios came back from two sets down and saved a match point to beat Andreas Seppi 5-7, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (5), 8-6, becoming the first Aussie to reach the last eight in the Melbourne Park men's draw since 2005, and the first male teenager since Federer in 2001 to reach two Grand Slam quarterfinals.

His first words to a packed Hisense Arena, where the crowd chanted and screamed like football fans: "Thanks mate. Feels so good."

Seppi beat Federer in the third round — the 17-time Grand Slam winner's earliest exit at the Australian Open in 14 years — and was on course to reach the quarterfinals for the first time in 40 majors when he had match point in the fourth set.

"I know that he had a lot of confidence, obviously, beating Roger," Kyrgios said. "Drawing all my experience from Wimbledon, coming back from two sets down, I knew I had the legs to do that."

Nadal stayed in contention for his second Australian Open title six years, turning around the first set — and ultimately the match — in the 11th and 12th games.

Nadal saved five break points, clinching the game with an ace and service winner to go ahead 6-5. In the next, he broke Anderson's serve, clinching the set when the South African hit a volley awkwardly into the net.

The two-game turnaround appeared to deflate Anderson, who won only five more games in the match.

Nadal, who lost last year's final to Stan Wawrinka, will play No. 7 Tomas Berdych in the quarterfinals.