French Open 2014: Fourth seed Simona Halep advances to last 16 with straight sets win

Last Updated: 31/05/14 4:53pm

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Simona Halep: Fourth seed cruised past Spain's Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor

Simona Halep: Fourth seed cruised past Spain's Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor

Sky Bet

Simona Halep continued her swift progress through the draw to ease into the fourth round at Roland Garros.

The world number four is the highest seed left and the second favourite for the title behind Maria Sharapova despite only having reached one grand slam quarter-final.

Halep, who beat Britain's Heather Watson in round two, has not come close to losing a set so far and she chalked up a second love set of the week in beating Spain's Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor 6-3 6-0.

The 22-year-old should face her first real test in the next round against 15th seed Sloane Stephens, who is once again showing her best form in the grand slams.

Stephens is through to the second week at a sixth consecutive grand slam after defeating big-hitting Russian Ekaterina Makarova 6-3 6-4.

Stephens and Halep have met three times before, with the American having won the last two.

There were differing fortunes for two former French Open champions, with Svetlana Kuznetsova knocking out fifth seed Petra Kvitova to reach the fourth round but Ana Ivanovic being beaten by Lucie Safarova.

Ivanovic has been having her best season since winning the title in Paris in 2008 but had lost her previous four matches against left-hander Safarova.

It was the same story on Saturday as the Czech won 6-3 6-3 to reach the fourth round at a grand slam for the first time in seven years.

Hugely disappointed

Ivanovic had been seen as one of the favourites to reach the final from the bottom half of the draw and she was hugely disappointed with her performance.

She said: "My clay-court season was really good. I was very happy about that.

"Everyone was talking about seeds coming out, but not in my part (of the draw). I had a really tough opponent today. I lost to her a lot of times before. So I knew she was going to be dangerous opponent.

"I'm very disappointed about my loss today. It's hard to tell what can happen but definitely this loss is tough."

Safarova, who held match point against eventual Australian Open champion Li Na in the third round in Melbourne in January, next plays 2009 Paris champion Kuznetsova.

Kuznetsova and Kvitova was a meeting of two former grand slam champions and it took three hours and 13 minutes to separate them, the Russian winning 6-7 (3/7) 6-1 9-7.

After winning the opening set on a tie-break, Kvitova was hampered by a right thigh problem for which she twice received treatment off court.

The Czech produced some excellent tennis, particularly when she was behind in the decider, but she will feel this was an opportunity missed after twice serving for the match.

Sixth seed Jelena Jankovic will meet 10th seed Sara Errani after both raced through their third-round matches.

Jankovic defeated Romania's Sorana Cirstea 6-1 6-2 while Errani, the runner-up in 2012, dropped just one game against Israel's Julia Glushko.

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