Saturday, 20 October, 2018

Defending champion Muguruza crashes out of French Open

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Rita Gibson | 13 June, 2017, 04:32

The Spaniard departed Court Suzanne Lenglen scoldingly wagging her finger as the crowd were asked to applaud Muguruza following her 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 defeat.

In addition, all eight women who play in the fourth round Monday are seeking a first major title, so it will be the first French Open since 1977 - and first major tournament anywhere since the 1979 Australian Open - without a past major champion among the quarterfinalists.

Three more wins would see her become the first home victor of a singles title at Roland Garros since Mary Pierce in 2000, but there must be some concern over how much physical and emotional energy she has expended.

Mladenovic came to the French Open after a stellar claycourt season in which she reached the finals in Stuttgart and Madrid and has won over the crowd with her spirited performances in Paris.

Matches to look for on Saturday at Roland Garros include (9) Aggie Radwanska vs. Alize Cornet, (3) Simona Halep vs. (26) Daria Kasatkina, and (11) Wozniacki vs. Bellis (to finish).

The Dane, previously engaged to golfer Rory McIlroy, said: "I think if everything is calm and good in life, it makes it much easier to focus on the court". "Through the match, I was getting more and more". In the third set, Mladenovic again relied on the crowd to lift her game, and also ruffle her opponent.

Yesterday, Chung, Asia's rising tennis star, picked up where he had left off to hand Nishikori his first Grand Slam bagel in six years.

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In remaining women's third-round matches, second-seeded Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic brushed aside Germany's Carina Witthoeft 7-5, 6-1; No. 5 Elina Svitolina of Ukraine won 6-4, 7-5 against Magda Linette, and Croatian qualifier Petra Martic upset 17th-seeded Anastasija Sevastova 6-1 6-1.

Women's 11th seed Caroline Wozniacki beat eighth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russian Federation 6-1 4-6 6-2 in the fourth round.

Other Top 10 winners Friday were No. 8 Svetlana Kuznetsova who outlasted No. 32 Zhang Shuai 7-6 (5), 4-6, 7-5, and No. 10 Venus Williams who eased past Belgian Elise Mertens 6-3, 6-1. She lost in the first or second round each of the previous three years.

"I feel confident right now after, always when you win two or three matches in a row it gives you a lot of confidence. I am taking it match by match, and it is going pretty well up to now".

"I am in the quarterfinals, and I am healthy and I am playing well".

With the boisterous crowd willing her every step of the way, Mladenovic was the more opportunistic player in the final set. "And it helps the game and I think he should be - him at his best is good for the game and it's a way I can contribute, hopefully".

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