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Cornet conquers Halep in the heat to reach Australian Open quarterfinals

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France’s Alizé Cornet has reached the quarterfinal stage at a major for the first time in her career after battling stifling hot conditions to beat former Australian Open finalist Simona Halep in three sets.

With the temperature well above 30 degrees Celsius, both players struggled in the heat on Rod Laver Arena, but it was Cornet who came out on top, winning 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 in 2 hours and 33 minutes.

This year’s Australian Open marks Cornet’s 63rd main-draw appearance. The 32-year-old will play Danielle Collins for a place in the semifinals.

Collins won a battle of attrition to overhaul 19th seed Elise Mertens 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 and book her second quarterfinal appearance at the Australian Open.

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In a gruelling clash of former semi-finalists lasting 2 hours and 51 minutes, the American 27th seed snatched the win with a barrage of power hitting as Mertens served to stay in the match.

Belgian Mertens saved two match points — the second with a gutsy second serve — but then surrendered meekly on the third with a double fault.

Danielle Collins needed almost three hours on court to get past Elise Mertens.(Getty Images: Clive Brunskill)

Collins is the third American woman to reach the quarterfinals this year, with Jessica Pegula and Madison Keys also advancing to the last eight.

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