The quarterfinal matches in the Hobart International will be played on Thursday, January 12th. The draw for the day will be led by the top seed Kiki Bertens and the third seed Monica Niculescu.
With this being the last chance for the players to build their rhythm before the Australian Open next week, all the players are keen on winning this tournament and effectively, boosting their morale.
Bertens has certainly been in a good form in Hobart. Following her first round defeat in the WTA Auckland to Lauren Davis, she has done well to recuperate her form and sail on her winning ways. Her previous match was against the Kazakh Galina Voskoboeva, against whom she won 6-1, 6-4. She produced five aces in the match and won 72 percent of her first service points.
The Dutch moved up in the rankings after a pretty stellar 2016 season. She won the Nuremberg Cup and followed it with a semifinal run in the French Open. She has proven herself to be a formidable force. Standing in her way now is the Belgian Elise Mertens.
The 21 year old Belgian has been playing quite well, as she made to the quarterfinal all the way from the qualifiers. Having spent a majority of the last year on ITF circuit, she has certainly built her form well. This being the first meeting between the two players, Bertens will start as the favourite one.
Niculescu too, will be facing her quarterfinal opponent Risa Ozaki, for the first time on the tour. The performance of her Japanese adversary has been quite impressive, having fought her way through the qualifiers and most recently, defeating the experienced Lucie Safarova in three sets.
As for the Romanian, she has had an easy run, owing to straight sets victories against Jelena Jankovic and Kirsten Flipkens. Comparing the two players, it is the third seed who is considerably ahead in terms of experience. While she needs to be on the lookout for this game, she should be able to prevail in three sets.
Here's the 2017 WTA Hobart Order of Play for Thursday, January 12:
Starting at: 11:00 am
Kiki Bertens (NED)  v Elise Mertens (BEL)
Jana Cett (CRO) v Veronica Cepede Royg (PAR)
Lesia Tsurenko (UKR) v Shelby Rogers (USA)
Risa Ozaki (JPN) v Monica Niculescu (ROU) 
Lyudmyla Kichenok (UKR)/Nadiia Kichenok (UKR) v Raluca Olaru (ROU)/Olga Savchuk (UKR)