It was a late night on center court at the Qatar Total Open in Doha, while day-3 saw three more of the top-seeds fall in second-round play. Caroline Wozniacki, who enjoyed a first-round bye, failed to take a set from Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer. Ana Ivanovic fell in 3-sets to the Czech Republic’s Klara Zakopalova. Sam Stosur, playing her first matches of the year outside of Australia, was taken-out in 3-sets by Jana Cepelova from the Slovak Republic. The top seven seeds remain for third round action on Thursday.
In her first match since winning the Australian Open, Na Li took 3-sets to take-down Magdalena Rybarikova. After the first set (6-1), it looked like it would be a quick match; but during the second set, Rybarikova relaxed into taking more risks while Li wailed her share of unforced errors, and it was all even after two. With two breaks in the third, Li then comfortably rolled into the third round. Her coach, Carlos Rodriguez isn’t here with Li this week, and after the match she said he’d earned some time off after the win in Melbourne.
The second match on center court saw a see-saw of sets with Petra Kvitova and Venus Williams. The third set featured some of the most competitive tennis we’ve seen on court here this year. Down 1-4 in the set, Kvitova battled back and took it to the tie-break where she fought off a match-point to overcome Venus. To her, it was a taste of redemption after last year’s loss to Venus’s little sister…
Kvitova: "I was 4-1 up against Serena last year and I lost that match so I figured why not I turn it around this time"
— Reem Abulleil (@ReemAbulleil) February 12, 2014
While Rory McIlroy looked-on, Wednesday’s third match saw Caroline Wozniacki struggle to put together a winning strategy against Yanina Wickmayer. Yanina’s played a lot of tennis coming into Doha, winning four of six Davis Cup matches in round robin play over the weekend, not to mention, playing in Doha’s first round. This was Caroline’s first competitive whack since falling in Melbourne’s 3rd round. With the two-set loss, Wozniacki’s now 3-3 in 2014 with only six matches under her belt. Wickmayer reached the QF here two year ago, where she fell to Victoria Azarenka.
Wednesday’s final match on center court: After an amazing Fed Cup weekend with her teammates, elevating Romania into the World Group II Playoffs, Sorana Cirstea came out firing against #4 in the world, Agnieszka Radwanska. Sorana’s court coverage was phenomenal, she had double set point on Radwanska at 5-4, but five games is all she would win. After Radwanska came back to win the 10th-game, then break, then serve-out the first set – Cirstea was completely out of gas. She delivered the final set to Agnieszka on a silver platter…with lox and cream cheese.
RESULTS: Qatar Total Open 2014. Day Three. Singles Second Round.
-  N Li (CHN) d M Rybarikova (SVK) 61 57 62
-  A Radwanska (POL) d S Cirstea (ROU) 75 60
-  P Kvitova (CZE) d V Williams (USA) 62 26 76(7)
-  S Errani (ITA) d [Q] S Hsieh (TPE) 60 64
-  J Jankovic (SRB) d K Knapp (ITA) 60 62
-  A Kerber (GER) d K Pliskova (CZE) 76(2) 64
-  S Halep (ROU) d K Kanepi (EST) 64 36 76(5)
- Y Wickmayer (BEL) d  C Wozniacki (DEN) 64 75
- K Zakopalova (CZE) d  A Ivanovic (SRB) 46 61 63
- J Cepelova (SVK) d  S Stosur (AUS) 64 46 61
- L Safarova (CZE) d S Peng (CHN) 62 57 64
- A Beck (GER) d [Q] T Pironkova (BUL) 67(5) 62 62
- M Niculescu (ROU) d B Mattek-Sands (USA) 61 36 63
- [Q] P Cetkovska (CZE) d S Zhang (CHN) 63 46 63
- [Q] M Lucic-Baroni (CRO) d A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) 64 61
- [WC] A Kleybanova (RUS) d S Voegele (SUI) 63 62
RESULTS: Qatar Total Open 2014. Day Three. Doubles First Round.
- A Kudryavtseva (RUS) / A Rodionova (AUS) d  A Hlavackova (CZE) / L Safarova (CZE) 64 61
- M Niculescu (ROU) / K Zakopalova (CZE) d  K Mladenovic (FRA) / F Pennetta (ITA) 46 64 10-2
- C Garcia (FRA) / O Kalashnikova (GEO) d K Barrois (GER) / L Thorpe (FRA) 76(5) 76(7)
- D Jurak (CRO) / A Klepac (SLO) d [WC] K Flipkens (BEL) / F Schiavone (ITA) 64 63
- A Groenefeld (GER) / M Lucic-Baroni (CRO) d M Erakovic (NZL) / P Martic (CRO) 62 46 10-6
THURSDAY: Qatar Total Open 2014. Day Four. Singles Third Round.
-  N Li (CHN) vs [Q] P Cetkovska (CZE)
-  A Radwanska (POL) vs [Q] M Lucic-Baroni (CRO)
-  P Kvitova (CZE) vs L Safarova (CZE)
-  S Errani (ITA) vs M Niculescu (ROU)
-  J Jankovic (SRB) vs [WC] A Kleybanova (RUS)
-  A Kerber (GER) vs K Zakopalova (CZE)
-  S Halep (ROU) vs A Beck (GER)
- Y Wickmayer (BEL) vs J Cepelova (SVK)
THURSDAY: Qatar Total Open 2014. Day Four. Doubles Second Round.
-  S Errani (ITA) / R Vinci (ITA) vs L Raymond (USA) / S Zhang (CHN)
-  S Hsieh (TPE) / S Peng (CHN) vs [PR] I Buryachok (UKR) / V Diatchenko (RUS)
-  K Peschke (CZE) / K Srebotnik (SLO) vs C Garcia (FRA) / O Kalashnikova (GEO)
-  C Black (ZIM) / S Mirza (IND) vs K Pliskova (CZE) / K Pliskova (CZE)
-  R Kops-Jones (USA) / A Spears (USA) vs [WC] J Jankovic (SRB) / A Kleybanova (RUS)
-  A Pavlyuchenkova (RUS) / N Petrova (RUS) vs A Groenefeld (GER) / M Lucic-Baroni (CRO)
- D Jurak (CRO) / A Klepac (SLO) vs A Kudryavtseva (RUS) / A Rodionova (AUS)
- M Niculescu (ROU) / K Zakopalova (CZE) vs H Chan (TPE) / L Huber (USA)