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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Strong Russian Showing at Open

ReutersAnna Chakvetadze wearing a look of satisfaction Monday before match point against Tamira Paszek at the U.S. Open.
NEW YORK -- Maria Sharapova may be out of this year's U.S. Open, but the way Svetlana Kuznetsova and Anna Chakvetadze are playing, there's still a good chance that a Russian will end up claiming the women's singles title.

World No. 4 Kuznetsova needed only 74 minutes Monday to dispose of an awestruck Victoria Azarenka of Belarus 6-2, 6-3 and reach the Open's last eight for the first time since winning the title in 2004.

"I feel like I'm getting better every match," said Kuznetsova, the highest remaining seed in the bottom half of the draw. "I'm very confident about my game."

Sixth seed Chakvetadze advanced to her third grand slam quarterfinal of the year Monday by beating 16-year-old Tamira Paszek of Austria 6-1, 7-5.

Paszek fought off a match point with Chakvetadze serving at 5-4 in the second set and broke to make it 5-5. The 20-year-old Russian broke right back and held serve to claim victory in 78 minutes at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Chakvetadze, who lost in the quarters at the Australian and the French Open to Maria Sharapova, advanced to a quarterfinal test against Israeli Shahar Peer.

The Russian rocketed in 20 winners to just eight for Paszek but was impressed with her opponent, who needed treatment during the match for her bandaged left thigh.

"She's only 16 years old! Unbelievable," Chakvetadze told the crowd.

Kuznetsova took the first five games in breezy court conditions at Arthur Ashe against Azarenka, who made 16 unforced errors in the opening set.

"It was such a big court, and playing against Svetlana, I was a little nervous at the beginning," said Azarenka, 18, who put out former winner Martina Hingis in the third round.

Kuznetsova needed five match points in the final set to win. She finished it off with a strong, crosscourt forehand that Azarenka chased into the corner, losing her hat on the way.

Earlier in the set, Kuznetsova was the one who tried without success to track down a shot. In the sixth game she charged the net and skidded, doing the splits and winding up sprawled on the court.

Kuznetsova now faces unseeded Agnes Szavay of Hungary, who beat Ukraine's Julia Vakulenko 6-4, 7-6 (1).

On the men's side, No. 4 seed Nikolai Davydenko continued his march through the draw with a 6-1, 6-3, 6-4 triumph over South Korean Lee Hyung-taik.

Lee, however, was happy with his showing at Flushing Meadows.

"Davydenko was faster than I actually thought he'd be," Lee told reporters through an interpreter after the two-hour, three-minute match at Louis Armstrong Stadium.

"I worked really hard, but Davydenko is a really good player. I tried my best.

Davydenko, a semifinalist last year, never lost serve and faced only two break points in the match as he smacked 31 winners against just 13 for the 31-year-old Korean.

Davydenko faces Tommy Haas in the quarters. The Russian has not lost a set during his four Open matches.

Roger Federer, on the other hand, had a few tense moments in his two-hour match with 60th-ranked Feliciano Lopez, dropping a set before winning 3-6, 6-4, 6-1, 6-4.

Lopez had the three-time defending champion on his heels early, winning the first set with five aces and 11 winners. His dazzling display continued until Federer scored a break in the 10th game to win the second set. Lopez never recovered.

Federer won 35 straight points on his serve in the final two sets, committing just 12 errors during the 199 points played in the two-hour match. Lopez had 22 winners in the first two sets, but only 12 thereafter.

Next up for Federer will be fifth-seeded Roddick, who was leading 7-6, 2-0 when ninth-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych retired with nausea and breathing problems in their fourth-round clash.

The American said he felt sorry for Berdych, but with world No. 1 Federer waiting in the wings, he added: "This is a lot better than being dead tired."