French Open: Caroline Garcia keeps French hopes swaying after momentous 1R win!


French fifth seed Caroline Garcia braced herself against Xiyu Wang to come through to the second round of the French Open on Friday. The highest-seeded home player, in fact the only seeded home player across the men’s and women’s draws, needed two hours and 38 minutes to post a 7-6(4), 4-6, 6-4.

After both players had traded breaks in the opener, the eventual winner of the set had to be decided by the tie-break. Garcia’s consistency proved to be decisive and she was able to go up in the match. In the second set, Wang upped her level considerably and was able to break Garcia’s serve early on in the set. The higher-ranked player had her chances across the set but Wang prevailed time and again to take the set and send the match into the decider.

Garcia’s shot-making shone through in the deciding set and she kept pushing at her opponent, who struggled even with her serve. The left-hander had nine double faults for the match, four of which came in the third set alone. Wang, however, did well to keep Garcia at bay each time until the 10th game. Serving to stay in the match, pressure told on Wang and two errors off her racquet brought up match points for the 29-year-old. One last error from Wang ensured Garcia converted the first of the two match points.

The world no. 5 will now play Anna Blinkova. The Strasbourg International finalist defeated Ysaline Bonaventure 6-2, 6-0.

French Open: Elina Avanesyan scripts Belinda Bencic’s exit 

Meanwhile, Elina Avanesyan produced a three-set upset over 12th seed Belinda Bencic. Avanesyan, ranked 134th in the world, who made it to the Roland Garros main draw as a lucky loser, won 6-3, 1-6, 6-4 after two hours and 19 minutes.

Except for the second set, Bencic wasn’t able to handle Avanesyan’s shots. The Swiss did finish with 19 winners to Avanesyan’s 18. But she outhit her opponent by just winner in the third set and had four fewer winners to the 20-year-old’s eight in the opener. Bencic finished the match with 49 unforced errors to her opponent’s 42.

Playing in the second round of the French Open, and a Major, for the first time in her career, Avanesyan will now take on Leolia Jeanjean.

Photo Credit: WTA Twitter

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