MELBOURNE, Australia -- For the third consecutive Australian Open, No. 14 seed Victoria Azarenka had the measure of Barbora Strycova. She took down the No. 48th-ranked Czech player 6-2, 6-4 on Monday.
This was Azarenka's third consecutive straight-sets victory over the 29-year-old Strycova. Azaranka has dropped only 11 games in four matches.
"Today, I was more focused on staying focused because she's a type of player that throws you a lot off your rhythm," Azarenka said. "I was just trying to focus more on execution and be aggressive and follow my game plan from the first point to the last.
"But I think I played pretty well there. There are things I could have done better, I think always. That's the perfectionist in me. But overall, pretty solid."
Azarenka, now 9-0 in 2016, is tracking toward a meeting in the finals with No. 1-seeded Serena Williams. Last year, Azarenka played Williams three times and pushed her to the maximum three sets every time -- but lost all three.
Azarenka will meet a familiar opponent, No. 7 seed Angelique Kerber, in the quarterfinals. The two met two weeks ago in the Brisbane final, and Azarenka prevailed 6-3, 6-1.
"It's exciting," Azarenka said. "I always look forward to [playing] against her. She always gives me tough matches. I prepare myself for a very tough match because she's very solid, very consistent and an amazing fighter. I have to play my best game to beat her, for sure."
The 26-year-old Belarusian is 6-0 lifetime against Kerber.
"I had tough matches against her in the past," Kerber said of Azarenka. "I never won against her right now, but that will be a challenge, you know. I [am] looking forward, when I play against her, to really take my chances, take the next match.
"It's a new one, it starts from zero, and I know what's coming from her. I will try to be aggressive and try to go and win the match. She played very well from the first match here in Melbourne. Yeah, I will try to get another chance the next challenge against her, and we will see what happens then."
Earlier, Kerber took care of her fellow German Annika Beck 6-4, 6-0 in an 88-minute match. Beck, 21 and the WTA's No. 55th-ranked player, surprised No. 13 seed Timea Bacsinszky on the way to her best Australian Open result ever.
Kerber, who raised her record to 9-1 in 2016, has yet to face a seeded player in the Melbourne draw. This is the best Australian Open for the two-time Grand Slam semifinalist (2011 US Open, 2012 Wimbledon). Kerber saved a match point against Misaki Doi in first round.
Australia is Azarenka's favorite Grand Slam. Her two major victories have come in Melbourne in 2012 and '13. She is 39-8 in her career at the Australian Open, after suffering serious foot and thigh injuries in 2015.
Azarenka has looked so sharp that, after Williams, she is the oddsmakers' favorite to win this tournament.
This was the best Aussie performance ever for Strycova, who was the girls' champion in 2002 and 2003.