TOKYO: Maria Sharapova rallied to defeat Italy's Francesca Schiavone 7-5, 2-6, 6-1 on Thursday and advance to the quarterfinals of the Pan Pacific Open.

Sharapova, playing her first match since losing to Serena Williams in the Australian Open final, struggled with her serve but recovered to beat the unseeded Schiavone.

Sharapova will face Japan's Ai Sugiyama in the final eight on Friday. Sugiyama downed Russia's Maria Kirilenko 3-6, 6-1, 6-3.

Important results: At Tokyo (WTA Tour Toray Pan Pacific Open): Second round: Maria Sharapova bt Francesca Schiavone 7-5, 2-6, 6-1; Jelena Jankovic bt Zheng Jie 6-4, 6-0; Elena Dementieva bt Elena Likhovtseva 6-3, 7-5; Ana Ivanovic bt Mara Santangelo 4-6, 6-1, 6-2; Samantha Stosur bt Li Na 6-2, 6-4; Ai Sugiyama bt Maria Kirilenko 3-6, 6-1, 6-3.

At Delray Beach (ATP Delray Beach International): Round-robin: Guillermo Garcia-Lopez bt Kristian Pless 6-3, 7-6(5); Alejandro Falla bt Rainer Schuettler 6-4, 6-3; Florian Mayer bt Andrei Pavel 6-3, 3-6, 6-2; Tommy Haas bt Lu Yen-Hsun 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.

At Vina Del Mar (ATP Movistar Open): Round-robin: Albert Montanes bt Gustavo Kuerten 6-1, 6-4; Ruben Ramireaz Hidalgo bt Diego Hartfield 6-4, 6-1; Luis Horna bt Ricardo Mello 6-3, 6-1; Nicolas Massu bt Gorka Fraile 6-3, 6-2.

At Zagreb (ATP PBZ Zagreb Indoors): Second round: Alexander Peya bt Robin Soderling 7-5, 4-6, 6-2; Marcos Baghdatis bt Frank Dancevic 7-6(1), 6-3. First round: Arnaud Clement bt Marin Cilic 6-4, 6-1; Ivan Ljubicic bt Roko Karanusic 6-4, 6-3; Michael Llodra bt Kristof Vliegen 6-7(3), 7-6(6), 6-3; Stefan Koubek bt Feliciano Lopez 2-6, 7-6(2), 6-4. Agencies

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