Li secures Halep rematch
Top seed Li Na will play Dominika Cibulkova in a rematch of the Australian Open final after beating Aleksandra Wozniak at the BNP Paribas Open.
The top seed appeared to be having a straightforward evening until the final game, when she eventually clinched victory at the 11th time of asking.
Li said: "I think all the match I was feeling pretty good except the last game.
"The funny thing is at the beginning of the game I was feeling tight, nervous, and then I was feeling like, 'What's going on? Why can't I finish the match?'.
"But she never gave up and she tried to defend every point. It was a little bit tedious in the last game."
Cibulkova was one of the more surprising grand slam finalists of recent years and, although she was well beaten by Li in the final in Melbourne, the Slovakian has continued her good form.
On Tuesday she upset eighth seed Petra Kvitova 6-3 6-2 to earn another crack at the Chinesewoman in the quarter-finals in Indian Wells.
Second seed Agnieszka Radwanska has stayed away from drama so far and defeated France's Alize Cornet 7-5 6-3 to set up a last-eight meeting with Jelena Jankovic, who put out last year's runner-up Caroline Wozniacki.
Wozniacki led 3-1 in the opening set but Jankovic reeled off 10 games in a row before going on to win 6-3 6-1.
The Serbian struggled with a back problem in her first match, and she said: "I kind of surprised myself. Yesterday I did not hit at all. I had a lot of treatment, I could not put my shoes on."
Simona Halep won the battle of the rising stars against Eugenie Bouchard 6-2 1-6 6-4.
Australian Open semi-finalist Bouchard broke serve to lead 4-3 in the decider but Halep hit back with three games in a row.
The Romanian won more singles titles than any woman except Serena Williams last season and has carried the momentum into 2014.
Sixth seed Halep next meets Australian Casey Dellacqua, who was the beneficiary of American Lauren Davis' withdrawal through illness.
Meanwhile, Maria Sharapova's conqueror Camila Giorgi was brought firmly back down to earth with a 6-2 6-1 hammering by fellow Italian Flavia Pennetta, who plays American Sloane Stephens in the last eight.