Olympic champion Bencic off to winning start at Luxembourg Open

Belinda Bencic made a winning return to action as the Olympic champion defeated Zarina Diyas to seal a quarter-final spot at the Luxembourg Open.

© Getty Images Belinda Bencic is the top seed at the Luxembourg Open

Bencic, the unlikely successor in Tokyo, triumphed in straight sets 6-1 6-3 on Thursday to tee up a last-eight encounter with Liudmila Samsonova, who the Swiss lost to in Berlin earlier this year.

It was a welcome return to form for world number 12 Bencic after her defeat to eventual champion Emma Raducanu in the US Open quarter-finals last week.

Joining the top seed in the quarters is defending Luxembourg Open champion Jelena Ostapenko, who needed three sets to overcome Arianne Hartono.

Top seed Last eight

@BelindaBencic sets up a rematch of the Berlin final against Samsonova!#WTALuxembourg pic.twitter.com/NWadiZh4P5

— wta (@WTA) September 16, 2021

Second seed Elise Mertens also progressed, though she had to come from behind to beat Aliaksandra Sasnovich 3-6 6-2 7-5.

In Thursday’s other last-16 tie, Marie Bouzkova beat Greet Minnen to round off the quarter-finals line up.

Meanwhile, Sorana Cirstea and Jasmine Paolini will meet in the Zavarovalnica Sava Portoroz quarter-finals after respective victories over Tereza Martincova and Anna Kalinskaya.

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