French Open: Aryna Sabalenka sets showdown with best friend, Elena Rybakina also wins

Sabalenka and Rybakina claimed straight-set wins on Thursday afternoon.

by Dzevad Mesic
French Open: Aryna Sabalenka sets showdown with best friend, Elena Rybakina also wins
© Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill

Aryna Sabalenka and Elena Rybakina have booked third-round tickets at Roland Garros as two top-three seeds got the job done on Thursday afternoon. 

Sabalenka, seeded at No. 2, didn't have any problems against Moyuka Uchijima, ousting the world No. 80 with a 6-2 6-2 scoreline. 

Third-seeded Rybakina wasn't as dominant as Sabalenka but the third-seeded Kazakh still completed a 6-3 6-4 win over 50th-ranked Arantxa Rus. 

In the French Open third round, Sabalenka will play against her best friend Paula Badosa, who edged out Yulia Putintseva 4-6 6-1 7-5. On the other side, Rybakina awaits the winner of the match between Elise Mertens and Petra Martic.

How Sabalenka ousted Uchijima?

At the start of the match, Uchijima looked decent and competitive against Sabalenka. But after the opening four games went without a single break point on either side, Sabalenka went on to claim back-to-back breaks and win the next four games to seal the first set.

Aryna Sabalenka
Aryna Sabalenka © Getty Images Sport - Clive Mason

In the second set, Sabalenka again earned two breaks as the Belarusian broke Uchijima in the fourth and eighth games en route to completing a dominant two-set win.

During the entire match, Sabalenka faced break points only in one game - she saved four break points in the seventh game of the second set.

How Rybakina got the job done against Rus?

Early in the first set, Rybakina faced break points in two games while she wasn't able to create any break points. But after saving a break point in the third game and another break point in the seventh game, Rybakina earned her first break point and the break in the eighth game for a 5-3 lead before serving out for the opener in the following game.

Elena Rybakina
Elena Rybakina © Getty Images Sport - Dan Istitene

Down by a set, Rus got her first break of the match in the sixth game of the second set for a 4-2 lead. Down by a break in the second set, Rybakina didn't panic as she responded with back-to-back breaks to win four games in a row - overturn the deficit - and complete a two-set win.

French Open Aryna Sabalenka Elena Rybakina