Former champion Garbine Muguruza reached the third round of 2020 Roland Garros on Thursday. The Spaniard defeated Kristyna Pliskova 6-3, 6-2 in 68 minutes. The 11th seed stormed back into the match after being broken in one of the initial games of the set.
As it turned out, it was the only break point she faced throughout the match. Muguruza hit 21 winners to Pliskova’s 10 and had 13 unforced errors to the Czech’s 24. She also won 93% of her net points. After the match, Muguruza said, “I think my game has improved.
I feel like my tennis was there and it's here. I feel like I am better mentally prepared. I think I did a good job trying to put things together, solve some stuff, see more clearly some other things, just in general a little bit more in perspective…I don't think I'm a different player, but I feel like harder, I feel stronger out there”.
Since making her French Open debut in 2013, this is the sixth time the former world no. 1 has reached the third round (or better) in Paris. The only time she failed to do so was in the year of her debut in 2013 when she lost in the second round.
Muguruza will play Danielle Collins for a chance to make it to the second week in the French capital.
2020 Roland Garros: Fiona Ferro and Clara Burel hold the French fort
Another Spaniard, the unseeded Paula Badosa also made it to the round-of-32.
Badosa upset the 29th seed and 2018 finalist Sloane Stephens in their second-round clash. After an hour and 40 minutes of play, Badosa won 6-4, 4-6, 6-2. She will play Jelena Ostapenko next, who had knocked out the second-seed Karolina Pliskova earlier.
Thirteenth seed Petra Martic and Laura Siegemund will take on each other for a place in the last-16. The Croatian defeated Veronika Kudermetova 6-7(1), 7-5, 6-3 while Siegemund advanced after winning the derby against countrywoman Julia Goerges 1-6, 6-1, 6-3.
At the top of the second half of the women’s draw, eighth seed Aryna Sabalenka and 30th seed Ons Jabeur set up a third-round appointment with each other. The Belarusian, who will be playing the third round in Paris for the first time in her career, had earlier defeated Daria Kasatkina.
In her second-round match against Nao Hibino, the Tunisian won 7-6(4), 6-4. Fourteenth seed Elena Rybakina suffered a shock upset at the hands of France’s Fiona Ferro. The 49th ranked Ferro won 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 after two hours and three minutes of play.
Ferro, who is one of the three Frenchwomen left in the draw, will play Romanian Patricia Maria Tig for a place in the pre-quarters. Tig beat Christina McHale 6-4, 6-3. Tig’s compatriot Irina Bara also took her place in the third round after her second-round opponent Alison van Uytvanck withdrew mid-match.
At the time of Van Uytvanck’s withdrawal, Bara was leading 6-1, 4-0. The world no. 142 will clash against the fourth-seeded Sofia Kenin in the upcoming round. Canada’s Leylah Fernandez will take on seventh seed Petra Kvitova in a southpaw slugfest in the fourth round.
Fernandez defeated Slovenia’s Polona Hercog 6-4, 3-6, 6-1. The 357th ranked French player Clara Burel took her place as the third French player in the round-of-32 at 2020 Roland Garros. The 19-year-old defeated coeval, Kaja Juvan of Slovenia 7-6(6), 6-2 in their second-round match.
Burel will play Shuai Zhang next. Zhang defeated Alize Cornet 6-4, 7-6(3) in their second-round match. Cornet, incidentally, was the youngest French player to make it to the third round at the French Major back in 2008, before Burel pipped her record. Photo Credit: Corinne Dubreuil/FFT