Muchova, new clay court enthusiast
Adept of fast surfaces, Karolina Muchova, with a very offensive game, two quarters at Wimbledon in 2019 and 2021 and a semifinal at the Australian Open, had not particularly shone on the Parisian clay, where she had never reached the 3rd round. Ancient history. The 43rd player in the world has not changed her nature to reach the last four of Roland-Garros, where she will challenge Aryna Sabalenka, after dominating Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, finalist in 2021. "I think I've always had that in me, since my childhood," said the Czech. I like the beautiful game, whatever the discipline. I had a competitive spirit and I liked variety." And the audience of the Chatrier appreciated.
- Roland Garros Men's Singles
- Roland Garros Women's Singles
Sabalenka's convincing focus
On the court, the world number two was able to make the difference against Elina Svitolina (6-4, 6-4). In a press conference, she broke her media silence and had the merit of clarifying some gray areas surrounding her case. Asked to explain why she had waited for Svitolina at the net, knowing full well that the Ukrainian would not come to shake her hand, Sabalenka surprised by positioning herself against the war in Ukraine and against President Lukashenko. "I don't support war, I don't want my country to be involved in any conflict. I don't want sport to be involved in politics, because I'm just a tennis player. I am only 25 years old. If I wanted to be a politician, I wouldn't be here. I don't want to be drawn into politics."
Novak Djokovic's first set of the tournament was the work of Karen Khachanov. The Russian has long upset the Serb who at times seemed blunt, inert. Novak Djokovic, without shining, was able to tighten the game, like the tie-break of the 2nd set perfectly controlled (7/0). Djokovic played and won 5 tie-breaks in the tournament. Khachanov recorded his 9th loss in 10 matches 4-6, 7-6, 6-2, 6-4 against Djokovic. Despite the efforts made, the Russian was not able to topple the Serb who, with a precious victory found himself propelled for the 12th time into the last four in Paris.
The off-topic whistles of the Parisian public
The days follow one another and are similar at Roland-Garros with an audience, obviously not concerned by the drama of the war in Ukraine. After booing the young Ukrainian Marta Kostyuk for not shaking hands with Belarusian Sabalenka, he booed for the same reason Elina Svitolina, beaten by the same Sabalenka, on Tuesday in the quarterfinals. The ukrainian, not resentful, said: "I expected it. When you lose and don't shake hands, you risk getting whistled. This was also the case for Marta Kostyuk in the 1st round." "People should be ashamed," she replied. Apparently not.
Never two without three for women
After Serena Williams against Irina-Camelia Begu in 2021, Alizé cornet against Jelena Ostapenko in 2022, the 2023 tournament will have offered only one female poster in 2023: Aryna Sabalenka against Sloane Stephens. One evening out of ten reserved for women! The programming of a women's match in the night session is not an easy thing, especially because of the lack of desire of the players (as confided by Iga Swiatek and Coco Gauff, scheduled this Wednesday in match n ° 2 on the court Philippe Chatrier) but year after year, the phenomenon is repeated. The last night session will oppose, this Wednesday, Casper Ruud to Holger Rune.
The zero points of French juniors
There were 10 of them on the starting line. With in a corner of the head, the last victorious campaigns of their compatriots having written their name on the list of winners of the tournament: Geoffrey Blancaneaux (2016), Luca Van Assche (2021) and Gabriel Debru (2022). The last of them, Antoine Ghibaudo, lost 6-3, 6-3 in the 2nd round against American prodigy Darwin Blanch (15 years old).