Moscow, Russia, 19 October 2016 | AP

Australia’s Daria Gavrilova has continued her strong form with a 6-2 6-2 first-round upset of Lucie Safarova at the Kremlin Cup.

The 22-year-old, following on from a stunning run which included victory over world No.1 Angelique Kerber to reach the semifinals at the Hong Kong Open last week, maintained her hot streak with victory over the former world No.5.

Gavrilova took control of Tuesday’s match midway through the first set, winning seven consecutive games to claim the set and the opening three games of the second.

“I tried to play more long-rallied, but she (Safarova) was making a lot of mistakes in her second or third shots,” Gavrilova said.

“She didn’t perform her best today.”

The world No.37 Australian did not give the 2015 French Open finalist a break point in the match.

Gavrilova reached the China Open quarterfinals the week before her semifinal run in Hong Kong; she has won seven of her last nine matches.

She next faces No.2 seed Carla Suarez Navarro – the Spaniard who is gunning for the title in Moscow to secure her place at the WTA Finals in Singapore – for a quarterfinal berth.