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03/03/2016

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 03 March 2016 - Qualifier Zhu Lin of China reached her first career WTA Tour quarter-finals after the World No 190 upset 95th-ranked Zarina Diyas of Kazakhstan in the BMW Malaysian Open at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club in Bukit Kiara this afternoon.

Zhu Lin, ranked 10th in China, overcame challenging temperatures in Kuala Lumpur to record an impressive 7-5, 6-2 win for her first ever success over Zarina in 73 minutes. The 22-year-old plays compatriot and 99th-ranked Wang Qiang in the quarter-finals tomorrow (Friday).

Zhu Lin broke Zarina early and led 4-1 in the first set but her opponent bounced back to level at 5-5 before closing it out. It was a straight forward second set as the tiring Zarina could not match Zhu Lin’s flawless rallies.

"It was a tough match and I am so happy to win it. She’s a top 100 player and I had lost to her before. It did not expect to make it so far here," said Zhu Lin, who has made the second round of five tour events since 2014.

"I allowed Zarina to come back after taking a 4-1 lead but I was not thinking so much about it. I just focused on my performance."

It will be Zhu Lin’s first meeting against Wang Qiang, ranked third in China, in two years. In 2014, Wang Qiang beat Zhu Lin in Tianjin and Ningbo.

"We are both from China. I think it will be a very tough match but I am looking forward to it," said Zhu Lin.

Britain’s World No 96 Naomi Broady also advance to the quarter-finals after a 6-4, 6-3 win over another qualifier Yang Zhaoxuan of China. Last year Naomi, she was ousted in the qualifiers.

"Today, it was very humid. I was trying to save my energy between the points. When I spoke to my coach at 5-4, he told me that Zhaoxuan was looking tired from the heat and I took the positives from that.

"In the second set, I got an early break and led 3-0 really quickly but I knew she would keep fighting. The seventh game was crucial but I serve it out and held on for the win," said Naomi, who now aims to make top 50 before the end of the season.

Naomi said: "My goal for the whole year was actually to make the top 100 but I did it early this month. I hope to keep improving. "

"I want to be British No 1 but to achieve that I need to aim high to catch up with compatriot and World No 27 Johanna Konta who did really well at the Australian Open," said Naomi, who turned 26 on Feb 28.

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