LONDON (Reuters) - Spain’s Garbine Muguruza knocked out world number one Angelique Kerber on Monday and then said she was looking forward to playing ‘Spanish style’ Svetlana Kuznetsova in the last eight.
Muguruza, runner-up at Wimbledon in 2015, showed character as well as attacking skill to defeat Kerber 4-6 6-4 6-4, while Kuznetsova eliminated Polish ninth seed Agnieszka Radwanska.
The Venezuela-born Muguruza has won her last three meetings with the 32-year-old Russian, most recently in Brisbane in January.
“I am looking forward to it. All the matches that I have played against her have been tough. We practice a lot of times in Spain together,” she said.
”If she’s here, it means she’s playing great. Today she did good. So, yes, I am expecting a difficult match.
“I have got to go and play like today, be aggressive. She has kind of a Spanish style. I like the way she plays. She’s very talented and plays very nice shots,” added the 2016 French Open champion.
“I’ve got to go for it.”
Kuznetsova has spent the last 19 years in Spain after moving to the Sanchez-Casal Academy as a 13-year-old and Muguruza believes that has clearly influenced her style.
“She trains a lot in Spain. She has a very good forehand, nice serve as well. It’s the details that makes (her Spanish) like styles and stuff,” she added.
Kuznetsova, who also has a Spanish coach, has reached the quarter-finals at the All England Club three times before, losing on each occasion, but it is 10 years since her most recent appearance in the last eight.
Like Muguruza she is a former French Open winner and the pair will be meeting on grass for the first time in a tournament.
“I‘m just looking forward to playing her. We practice sometimes on grass. With age I start to play better on grass. It’s gonna be very tough match,” said the Russian.
Reporting by Simon Evans, editing by Pritha Sarkar