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French Open PIX: Medvedev loses in first round; Swiatek advances

Last updated on: May 31, 2023 00:15 IST

Images from Day 3 of the 2023 French Open at Roland Garros in Paris on Tuesday.

Medvedev blown away in first round

IMAGE: Thiago Seyboth Wild of Brazil reacts during his first round match against Daniil Medvedev at Roland Garros on Tuesday. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

A wound-up Daniil Medvedev suffered a shock first-round exit at the French Open when he lost 7-6(5), 6-7(6), 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 to Brazilian qualifier Thiago Seyboth Wild amid gusty winds on Tuesday.


Although Seyboth Wild won two Challenger (second-tier) titles on clay this season, world number two Medvedev was coming into the Grand Slam tournament on the back of a title in Rome, having shown tremendous progress on the slowest surface.

It counted for nothing on a windswept court Philippe Chatrier, where the Russian seemed increasingly frustrated, arguing with the umpire and the fickle Paris crowd over a line call in the fourth set.

Seyboth Wild just had too much pace and power for Medvedev, who never found his range and capitulated after four hours and 15 minutes.

"I watched Daniil play since I was junior and beating him on such a court is a dream come true,' the world number 172 said.

"I tried to use my forehand against his and it worked pretty well. I started cramping at the start of the second set but I used my mental strength to play my best tennis."

IMAGE: World No 2 Daniil Medvedev seemed increasingly frustrated, arguing with the umpire and the fickle Paris crowd over a line call in the fourth set. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

Medvedev stole his opponent's serve early in the first set but was broken to love in the fourth game as Seyboth Wild forced a tiebreak, in which he had the upper hand.

Clearing dust off his eyes, he served for the set at 6-5 and Medvedev netted the return.

Seyboth Wild maintained the pressure on the Russian in the second set, mixing his powerful game with timely drop shots as the red dirt continued to swirl around the court.

Medvedev saved two set points in the second tiebreak and on the Russian's first set point, Seyboth Wild, with an open court for a routine overhead, sent the ball wide.

The Brazilian's game - and body - was falling to pieces as he lost the third set and requested medical assistance for a nose bleed and finger problem.

But he picked his body and game up in the fourth, levelling the contest when Medvedev's backhand sailed long.

The Brazilian kept his momentum going, opening a 2-0 lead in the decider and, although Medvedev clawed back to level at 3-3, Seyboth Wild broke again for 4-3.

He held on to his advantage and ended Medvedev's ordeal on the first match point with a booming forehand winner down the line.

Top seed Swiatek enjoys winning start

IMAGE: Top seed Iga Swiatek, chasing a third French Open title in four years, beat Spain's Cristina Bucsa in straight sets. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

World number one Iga Swiatek launched her French Open title defence on Tuesday by easing past Spain's Cristina Bucsa 6-4, 6-0 to move into the second round.

The Pole, chasing a third French Open title in four years, got off to a sluggish start on a windy afternoon on Philippe-Chatrier court.

She had beaten the Spaniard in under an hour, losing just one game, at this year's Australian Open but Swiatek had a less than perfect run-up to Paris, retiring from her Italian Open quarter-final after suffering a thigh injury two weeks ago.

The 21-year-old triple Grand Slam winner was broken twice in her first three service games as a determined Bucsa, ranked 70th in the world, mixed it up and initially succeeded in throwing her opponent off balance.

But the top seed heeded that wake-up call towards the business end of the set and broke back to seal it.

The Pole, who began her 61st week at the top of the WTA rankings and is the favourite in Paris, snatched another break at the start of the second set with a thundering crosscourt forehand winner and never looked back.

She made amends for her first-set wobble with a bagel.

Rune passes Eubanks test

IMAGE: Holger Rune in action during his first round match against Christopher Eubanks of United States. Photograph: Clive Mason/Getty Images

Danish sixth seed Holger Rune overcame a mid-match wobble to see off French Open debutant Christopher Eubanks 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(2), 6-2 in the opening round of Roland Garros on Tuesday.

Rune reached the quarter-finals last year and the 20-year-old came into the tournament with big expectations on his shoulders after his run to the Munich title and runner-up finishes in Monte Carlo and Rome.

The world number six took the first set but dropped the next in tame fashion and was pushed hard in the third by Eubanks who was seeking a first top-10 victory on his third attempt.

After edging ahead in the contest via the tiebreak, Rune stepped up his game for an early break in the fourth set and recovered after a fall late on to close out the victory.

Gauff shrugs off slow start to reach second round

IMAGE: Coco Gauff celebrates winning her first round match against Rebeka Masarova of Spain at the French Open on Tuesday. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

American sixth seed Coco Gauff recovered from an error-strewn start to begin her French Open quest with a 3-6, 6-1, 6-2 victory over Spain's Rebeka Masarova on Tuesday.

Gauff, runner-up a year ago, looked uncomfortable early on with her troublesome forehand frequently letting her down.

World number 71 Masarova, a former French Open junior champion, took full advantage to dominate the opening set and looked on course for a shock victory.

But 19-year-old Gauff settled down on a sunlit Court Suzanne Lenglen and reeled off seven games in a row from 1-1 in the second set to take command.

With her confidence restored, Gauff made no mistake as she moved 5-2 ahead in the decider and wrapped up victory with a hold to love as Masarova sent an attempted lob long.

Rybakina overcomes slow start to down Fruhvirtova

IMAGE: Moscow born-Kazakh Elena Rybakina broke back to draw level at 2-2 in the second set before switching gears again to quell the challenge of the 16-year-old Brenda Fruhvirtova. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Elena Rybakina shook off a sluggish start and continued her fine run on clay as the world number four moved into the second round of the French Open with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Czech qualifier Brenda Fruhvirtova on Tuesday.

The Wimbledon champion announced herself as a player for all surfaces by capturing the Italian Open title earlier this month, but dropped serve in the seventh game against Fruhvirtova before breaking right back and easing through the opening set.

The Moscow born-Kazakh broke back to draw level at 2-2 in the second set before switching gears again to quell the challenge of the 16-year-old Fruhvirtova, whose sister Linda also fell in the first round a day earlier.

Rybakina takes on another Czech in Linda Noskova in the next round as she continues her quest for a second major.

Jabeur mows down Bronzetti

IMAGE: Tunisia's Ons Jabeur in action during her first round match against Lucia Bronzetti of Italy. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

World number seven Ons Jabeur made a near-flawless start to her French Open campaign as she brushed aside unseeded Italian Lucia Bronzetti 6-4, 6-1 on Tuesday to reach the second round.

Jabeur has had a stop-start season in which she had minor knee surgery before winning the title in Charleston and skipping the Madrid Open with a calf problem but the Tunisian was in peak form in Paris as she eased through the first set.

IMAGE: Ons Jabeur celebrates winning the first round match. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Bronzetti came into the clash on Court Philippe Chatrier high on confidence after winning the first singles title of her career in Rabat but the 24-year-old's hopes of ending a five-match losing run at the majors faded as the contest wore on.

Jabeur, the runner-up at last year's Wimbledon and U.S. Open, blended guile and power as she reeled off the breaks in the second set to go 5-0 up before dropping serve.

The 28-year-old quickly shook off that minor dip to comfortably close out the contest in the following game when Bronzetti sent a shot wide at the net.

Ruud powers past qualifier Ymer

IMAGE: Norwegian world number four Casper Ruud is aiming for a second straight final in Paris. Photograph: Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Fourth seed Casper Ruud coasted into the French Open second round with a 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 victory over Swedish qualifier Elias Ymer on Tuesday to kick off his bid for a second straight final in Paris.

Ymer was no match for the baseline power of the Norwegian world number four, who lost in the 2022 final to Rafael Nadal, an absentee this year.
"Last year was one of the best tournaments of my life," Ruud said. "You want to defend what you did last year."

"Last year was incredible for me and I will try to do it again wherever I play."

He got his first break at 3-3 when Ymer sailed a forehand wide.

The Norwegian, whose season start was far from successful before winning the title on clay in Estoril in April and reaching the last four in Rome two weeks ago, broke his opponent again at the start of the second set.

Pummelling Ymer with thundering baseline winners, Ruud was in no mood to slow down, and even after the Swedish journeyman clawed his way back with a break of his own he responded with another break to bag the set.

Ymer, whose brother Mikael was eliminated in the first round as well, had no answer to Ruud's power game, littering the court with errors when engaged in longer rallies, one of which came on the second match point, handing victory to Ruud with a backhand miss.

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