Palermo, Italy (Sports Network) - Heavy Italian crowd favorite Roberta Vinci secured a quarterfinal berth at the $235,000 Italiacom Open tennis event.
This week's second seed handled Polona Hercog 6-2, 7-6 (7-3) in Thursday's second-round action on the red clay at Country Time Club. The Slovenian Hercog was the Palermo runner-up two years ago.
Vinci's quarterfinal opponent will be fifth-seeded Spaniard Lourdes Dominguez Lino.
Meanwhile, Spain's Estrella Cabeza Candela upended third-seeded Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic 6-3, 2-6, 7-6 (8-6), fourth-seeded Czech Klara Zakopalova snuck past Italian Karin Knapp 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, and Dominguez Lino outlasted Italian Nastassja Burnett 7-5, 4-6, 6-3.
Friday's other quarters will pit top-seeded Italian Sara Errani against seventh-seeded Spaniard Silvia Soler-Espinosa, Zakopalova versus German Dinah Pfizenmaier, and Czech Renata Voracova against Cabeza Candela. Errani is the reigning Palermo champ, also titled here in 2008, and was a runner-up in 2009.
The 2013 Palermo titlist will pocket $41,000.