Only took one day to guarantee 1st-time French Open finalist

31 May, 2018, 18:15 | Author: Laura Christensen
  • Hawkeye tennis

Another top seed fell by the wayside on Sunday in the first round of the French Open, as Kateryna Kozlova of Ukraine stunned defending champion and No.5 seed Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia, 7-5, 6-3.

The 26-year-old Chinese player had 19 winners in the match to only 14 unforced errors.

The World No. 3, now No. 1 in the race to the ATP Finals 2018, starts off his campaign against Lithuania's Ricardas Berankis on Court Suzanne Lenglen.

The final match on Philippe Chatrier could be the best of the bunch, with the big-hitting but often erratic Ostapenko opening her title defence against Kateryna Kozlova.

Ostapenko sent shockwaves around Paris and far beyond when she claimed a first tour-level title at Roland Garros previous year, but it was a very different story 12 months on. She previously beat Ostapenko both times they had faced off, before Ostapenko had risen in the rankings.

This is the first time since 2001, that Venus has lost in the first round in Paris and the sole time in her career that she has lost in the opening round of consecutive Grand Slams.

Serena Williams, owner of three French Open titles and 23 major singles trophies overall, returns to Grand Slam action for the first time since winning the 2017 Australian Open - and first time since giving birth to a daughter last September.

Former semi-finalist Gael Monfils shrugged off a typically sluggish first set to triumph against fellow Frenchman Elliot Benchetrit 3-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-1. "I was trying to build my game, and I think in the end it was".

"I was warming up and my coach said, "hey look" and we saw up on the board that I was playing a different opponent", said 27-year-old Dimitrov, a former Wimbledon semifinalist, after his 6-1, 6-4, 7-6 (7/1) win.


Ostapenko had 48 unforced errors during the match, 13 double faults, with just 22 winners.

The fourth seed opened proceedings on Court Philippe Chatrier as he began his latest attempt to win a maiden grand slam.

Earlier, Venus Williams was also upset in her opening match - a 6-4, 7-5 to Wang Qiang.

Kyrgios's withdrawal meant that 8 places in the first round were opened up to lucky losers.

The fourth-seeded Ukrainian prevailed 7-5 6-3.

At the beginning of the second set, Ostapenko made a break, leading 0-2.

Venus Williams and rain are on the schedule as the year's second Grand Slam tournament is set to start at Roland Garros.

"I like to think", she said, "that I win all my matches if I'm playing well".

There were no great surprises in the Men's singles tournament Sunday, as No. 2 seed Alexander Zverev secured his spot in the second round, along with a list of prominent names such as Grigor Dimitrov, Lucas Pouille and Kei Nishikori.

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