Ons Jabeur and former champion, Garbine Muguruza were the two biggest names who crashed out on Sunday, the opening day of action at the 2022 French Open. The Tunisian, seeded sixth in the draw, opened play against Magda Linette.
The Pole made a comeback after losing the opening set, 3-6, 7-6(4), 7-5 in two hours and 18 minutes. At the start of the match, Jabeur was able to take advantage of Linette overplaying her shots despite her own game not firing in the usual way.
Jabeur took an early lead after breaking Linette’s serve in the third game but promptly surrendered her serve back in the following game. A second break of Linette’s serve in the fifth game allowed Jabeur to maintain her lead all the way until she’d secured the set.
Going into the second set, spurred by the momentum she’d created for herself in the opening set. While Linette continued to play her game on the other side of the net, trying to keep her pace in the match, she faced three break points in the eighth game of the set with Jabeur having the chance to serve for the match.
However, Linette saved the lot before holding her own for the rest of the set, long enough to push it into the tie-break. In the tie-break, the Tunisian led her opponent 3-1 before losing ground again, allowing Linette to win the set and take the match into the decider.
In the deciding set, Linette broke Jabeur to go up 4-2 but was broken right back. In the 12th game of the set, Linette came back into the game, broke Jabeur who was 40-0 up to win what was the third win of her career against a top-10 player.
In the second round, Linette will play either Martina Trevisan or Harriet Dart.
French Open: Garbine Muguruza's blues continue
Meanwhile, Kaia Kanepi lived up to her billing as an upset-causer as she took down the 2016 champion, Muguruza in a comeback win of her own.
The Estonian won 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 in two hours and six minutes. Muguruza began the match on a strong note hitting winners and outplaying Kanepi, who began to get frustrated. The 10th seed’s control over the match extended into the initial moments of the second set when she broke Kanepi to start the set.
However, even as Muguruza wasn’t able to sustain the intensity of her game, Kanepi, too, started finding the range of her shots that helped turned the match around. Kanepi won five consecutive games in the second set to level the match.
In the third set, both players didn’t lose their serve until the ninth game when Muguruza blinked first. Kanepi made ample use of that opportunity to serve out the match in the following game. This was the Estonian’s 14th win against a player ranked inside the top-10 of the WTA rankings.
Looking to reach the third round at the French Open, Kaia Kanepi will now play Beatriz Haddad Maia. The Brazilian ousted another Spaniard, Cristina Bucsa, 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 in the first round. Photo Credit: French Open Twitter