Pliskova shows ruthless side as she breezes into quarter-finals
Karolina Pliskova needed just 46 minutes to race into the quarter-finals of the US Open with victory over Jennifer Brady.
The world number one had struggled in her last two matches and had to save a match point against Zhang Shuai in the previous round.
But this was much more like the player who defeated both Williams sisters to reach her first grand slam final at Flushing Meadows 12 months ago. Poor Brady, through to the last 16 here for the first time, barely got a look in as she was routed 6-1 6-0.
By the time the pair shook hands, Pliskova had thumped 23 winners, won 92% of points on her first serve and made just nine unforced errors.
With Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza knocked out on Sunday night by Petra Kvitova, this now appears a golden chance for Pliskova to win her maiden grand slam title.
Pliskova felt that she played one of her best matches of the year. "My first good match, actually," Pliskova said. "I think one of the best, even this year. The opponent was not the best today.
"She can definitely play better than she was playing today. I think she was kind of nervous, and also, with the shadow, I think she just didn't feel well."
Pliskova now faces American Coco Vandeweghe who defeated Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic, 6-4 7-6 (7-2) in an exciting encounter.