© Ella Ling


Notes from Roland Garros - day four


Bitesize bits from the fourth day of play at the French Open…

The calm after the storm?
No matter what happened at Roland Garros on Wednesday (Venus Williams lost quietly to Agnieszka Radwanska so that’s both Williams sisters out of the tournament), it wasn’t going to rival the 24-minute-game events of the night before. 

Cruising on through
Novak Djokovic, Tomas Berdych, Nicolas Devilder, Lukasz Kubot, Marin Cilic, Victoria Azarenka, Agnieszka Radwanska, Mathilde Johansson, Samantha Stosur, Annabel Medina Garriques, Ana Ivanovic, Sara Errani, Flavia Pennetta, Sloane Stephens, Aleksandra Wozniak, Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez, Dominika Cibulkova, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Nadia Petrova all won in straight sets.

One to watch
Sloane Stephens. The American youngster has been highly thought of for a while, but now she’s really showing it. Demolishing Bethanie Mattek-Sands 1 and 1, she’s into her second Grand Slam third round after reaching the same stage in New York last year. Can she go one better?

Did we expect that?
Roger Federer to drop a set in the second round to Adrian Ungur? No. But it happened. Other players to drop surprising sets included Fernando Verdasco, Stanislas Wawrinka and Juan Martin Del Potro.

Down and out
Marion Bartoli was a high profile casualty today, unseated in three sets by Petra Martic, despite a lot of gesturing and gesticulating from Walter.

Petra Cetkovska was another seed sent packing. While former champion Juan Carlos Ferrero had nothing to hurt Marin Cilic.

Neither did world No.1s and top seeds Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond, who looked shell-shocked as they went out first round.

Farewell to
It has been quite a few weeks for Brian Baker. The American, ranked No.141 at the start of this tournament, achieved another notch on his career-belt today, playing his first-ever five-set match against Gilles Simon. Despite trailing two sets to love, Baker fought back, taking the third on a tie-break, and the fourth for the loss of just one game. But he ran out of puff in the fifth, eventually going down 4-6, 1-6, 7-6(4), 6-1, 0-6.

Marathon match
Trust Arnaud Clement. The pocket-sized Frenchman is never happy unless he’s causing some sort of drama. So it is very like him to have had to go home with his score suspended overnight at 3-6, 7-6(2), 0-6, 6-2, 5-1. Against him.

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is another one forced to resume proceedings, against Cedrik Marcel Stebe. The two have split sets.

Name of the day
Dinah Pfizenmaier. Where do you start?

Quote of the day 

Venus on Serena: “Thankfully she has like 20-something majors to keep her warm at night. I think she’ll be fine.”

Come back tomorrow for (among others)…
Andy Murray, Caroline Wozniacki, John Isner and Maria Sharapova on Chatrier; Petra Kvitova, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (to finish), Rafael Nadal, Li Na and Grigor Dimitrov v Richard Gasquet on Lenglen; David Ferrer, Francesca Schiavone on Court 1; Heather Watson v Julia Goerges on Court 2; Milos Raonic, Angelique Kerber, and Jelena Jankovic on Court 3; and doubles and mixed doubles.

Hump day is approaching. Slowly.