Having seen so many upsets throughout the fortnight, we had a very quiet day yesterday. In fact, seven matches and seven favourites winning. Jabeur v Collins will be finished today.
I was hoping for the upset with Fiona Ferro, she played pretty well for a set against the fourth-seeded Sofia Kenin but the American turned up the heat after that. By the end, Kenin was taking Ferro’s second serve to the cleaners and it was one-way traffic. I can’t really have any complaints. Kenin was the player that was aware she has to change things up and that turned the match. That concludes all my bets in the women’s event, we are not far from a clean sweep now.
Petra Kvitova was in tears after beating Shuai Zhang. It is the first time in eight years she has made the quarters in Paris. This always looked like a good matchup for the Czech but she played really well. Not only did she show variety but she rained in her margins, not going for too much. Controlled aggression as they say. She will play Laura Siegemund next after she beat Paula Badosa. Siegemund was seen asking for and eating a couple of meals while her opponent was having treatment at one point. She had been having stomach problems and wanted some grub. Having lost the first set Badosa looked to be struggling with a back problem and from that point, Siegemund went away from her.
Novak Djokovic was given his toughest test by quite some way in Paris and was still a convincing 6/4 6/3 6/3 winner over Karen Khachanov. The Russian’s explosive power was on show but when Nole gets these bigger lads moving, he makes it look easy. It sets him up to put the record right as he will take on Pablo Carreno Busta in the last eight. Having been defaulted against the Spaniard in New York, you expect a backlash. PCB played very well again, he eased past Daniel Altmaier in straights. Altmaier didn’t put in the same standard performance that he has been but he did have chances. Serving for the second set and being broken was a huge turning point. PCB is playing more aggressively these days though and has taken his game to the next notch. Let’s see how close he can get to Nole. Remember, he said that he thought only Rafa was ‘superior’ coming into to Roland Garros.
Two of the young guns will meet in the other quarter-final in the top half of the draw. Stefanos Tsitsipas comfortably beat Grigor Dimitrov in three. The Bulgarian had his chances in the second set but wasn’t able to take them and in all truth, he folded pretty tamely in sets one and three. Andrey Rublev will play Stefanos after he beat Marton Fucsovics in four sets. Fucsovics had his chances in pretty much each set here but Rublev found a way to win ugly. I am looking forward to this contest on Wednesday, two of the NextGen lads that I both enjoy watching.
Andy Del Potro