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Naomi Osaka knocked out of Qatar Open by resilient Karolina Pliskova

Naomi Osaka was left to rue missed opportunities as veteran Karolina Pliskova edged her in the Qatar Open quarter-finals on Thursday night.

The former world number one was through to the last eight at a tournament for the first time in nearly two years following her maternity break but she could not capitalise on good starts in both sets.

Instead, it was Pliskova, champion at the Transylvania Open last week, who continued her winning run by triumphing in two tie-breaks for a 7-6(6) 7-6(5) victory.

The Czech moves on to face top seed and two-time defending champion Iga Swiatek, who remained unstoppable in Doha, defeating Victoria Azarenka 6-4 6-0.

Having trailed 4-3 in the opening set, world number one Swiatek raced through nine games in a row to stay on course for a third straight title.

The other semi-final will be between in-form third seed Elena Rybakina and unseeded Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

Pavlyuchenkova matched her best run at a WTA 1000 with a 7-5 6-4 win over Danielle Collins while Rybakina came from 4-1 down in the first set to defeat Leylah Fernandez 6-4 6-2.

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