Sharapova survives scare to win
French Open title favourite Maria Sharapova dug herself out of a hole to beat Sam Stosur and reach the French Open quarter-finals.
At a set and 3-4 down, it looked like the tournament might be about to lose another star name, but Sharapova did not drop another game in a 3-6 6-4 6-0 victory.
The Russian title favourite said: "I treat my career and my work as a very serious profession, and I know that what has got me my success is the fact that I'm a big competitor and that I don't want to give anyone a chance.
"I was never here from day one to make friendships. This is a battlefield for me, and I want to win.
"I think you see that passion when I'm on the court. That's my job. That's how I feel. I try to tough it out. I try to grind it out, whatever it takes. Sometimes it's not very pretty, but at the end of the day, if I get the job done, I'm happy."
Stosur was playing with five stitches in her leg after a gym accident and the match would have been considered a closer call but for Sharapova's 13-2 lead in matches between the two.
It did not look that way in the opening set, however, as Stosur dominated with her kick serve and forehand and Sharapova was left scrambling around behind the baseline.
She broke serve at the start of the second set but, after receiving a time violation, gave it back three games later, and it was Sharapova who was looking under the most pressure.
But, her US Open victory in 2011 as an honourable aside, Stosur has frequently cracked under pressure, and it was the same again.
Serving at 4-4 she played a terrible game, Sharapova held to take the set and then made it nine straight games to clinch victory.
Sharapova would have expected to face Serena Williams in the last eight but instead it will be the world number one's conqueror, Garbine Muguruza.
The Spaniard has built on her stunning second-round win impressively and ended the run of wild card Pauline Parmentier with a 6-4 6-2 victory.
Eugenie Bouchard reached her second successive grand slam quarter-final by knocking out eighth seed Angelique Kerber.
The 20-year-old made her grand slam breakthrough in January with a run to the semi-finals at the Australian Open and her progress in Paris has been just as impressive.
Bouchard came into the tournament in form after winning her first WTA Tour title in Nuremberg and her 6-1 6-2 thrashing of Kerber was her ninth victory in a row.
German Kerber, who was a quarter-finalist in Paris in 2012, is the fifth of the top eight seeds to exit the tournament.
Bouchard was unfazed by her run in Melbourne and it is a similar story here.
The Canadian said: "I feel like since the beginning of the year I have been improving my game, since Australia I'm at a different level from there.
"I'm confident and I really believe in my skills. I believe I can play with the best girls out there. She (Kerber) is top 10, so I respect her. She can play some really good tennis.
"I was really mentally prepared for anything, for a battle. I think that mindset helped me, made me realise whatever happens I can deal with it on the court.
"I was just really going for my shots. That was my intention. It worked."
It will be Carla Suarez Navarro who Bouchard plays in the last eight after the Spaniard defeated 21-year-old Ajla Tomljanovic 6-3 6-3.
The 14th seed last reached the quarter-finals in Paris back in 2008 while she beat Bouchard in the third round of Wimbledon last year.