French Open women’s day three first round matches
Dinara Safina was the biggest name to fall on day three of the French Open, with the 2009 runner-up knocked out in the first round by 39-year-old Kimiko Date Krumm. The Japanese veteran, who had made her French Open debut back in 1989, won the match 3-6, 6-4, 7-5.
Safina, on the comeback trail from a chronic back injury which continues to limit her preparation for tournaments, remained philosophical after the match, telling reporters, “You know, I am for sure I will not give up. You know, I will have to swallow this loss and keep on moving... After rain, always sun comes. I will do my best.”
First up on Philippe Chatrier Court was Justine Henin, who marked her long awaited return to the French Open with a 6-4, 6-3 victory over Tsetana Pironkova in the first round.
While the scoreline indicates a relatively straightforward match, there were some tense moments in the second set as Henin faced triple break point and the prospect of going down 2-4 in the set. But the four-time Roland Garros champion rallied to hold serve, and win the next three games, booking her place in the second round.
“It was just fantastic to share this again with the crowd as they gave me one more time great support. So it was very good to be back,” Henin said after the match on the court where she’s clinched tournament victory on four previous occasions.
Vera Zvonareva was another to win her opening match today, ending Alberta Brianti’s stay at Roland Garros with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over the Italian.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the second highest ranked teenager in women’s tennis, ensured Frenchwoman Alize Cornet’s hopes of success in her home Grand Slam were ended at the earliest possible opportunity. The Russian sealed a 6-4, 6-2 victory over the former world No. 11, whose ranking has now ballooned to world No. 74 and shows no signs of immediate improvement.
Eighteenth ranked Shahar Peer was another to move through to the second round on day three, as she eased past world No. 205 Nuria Llagostera Vives 6-1, 6-4.
French No. 1 and Marion Bartoli, seeded 13th, also made a winning start to her tournament on day three with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Italy’s Maria Elena Camerin on centre court.
None of the seeds could claim to have had an easier victory on day three than Daniela Hantuchova and Yanina Wickmayer though, with the pair both recording 6-1, 6-1 victories over their respective opponents.
Slovakia’s Hantuchova crushed Thailand’s Tamarine Tanasugarn in just over an hour in a match where the 23rd seed served eight aces and made 18 winners, while 16th seeded Wickmayer was equally impressive in her one hour and two minute victory over Sandra Zahlavova.