By Hanya El Ghetany
- Alcaraz, Zverev and Schwartzman survive scares
The match of the day was Carlos Alcaraz saving match point against Albert Ramos-Viñolas in a five-set thriller. The 19-year-old, who by many is considered a favourite to win the title despite his tough draw and relative inexperience, kept his dreams alive by forcing a fifth set and then recovering from a break down with a breath-taking variety of recovery shots to the pleasure of the audience. Zverev, just before Alcaraz took the stadium was down two sets against Sebastian Baez 2-6, 4-6. Baez had a match point in the fifth, but Zverev made a comeback, winning the remaining sets 6-1, 6-2, 7-5. Schwartzman survived yet another potential scare, making a comeback after being down 2-6, 6-7 to take the last three sets 6-2, 6-2, 6-2.
- Raducanu and Sakkari Exit
Emma Raducanu, the 12th seed, won the first set against Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-3 with a brilliant performance. Raducanu’s dominance faded in second set where she was overpowered by Sasnovich and lost 6-1 in about 30 minutes. Raducanu struggled further in the third set, and you could visually see the pressure getting to her. Unfortunately, Emma could not rescue that set and went on to lose the third set in another breadstick. Maria Sakkari also lost her match, a considerable surprise given her semifinal run last year and high seeding, ending her Roland-Garros run at the hands of Muchova, 6-7, 6-7.
- FAA, Isner through and Fritz out
In a somewhat easier match than his first-round encounter where he had to come back from being 2 sets down, Felix Auger-Aliassime won his second-round match against Ugo Humbert 6-0, 6-3, 6-4 in about two hours and 15 minutes. It was a very relaxed and easy match, and Auger-Aliassime will feel good headed into the third round off the back of his best performance in Paris so far. Meanwhile, while Felix signed autographs, the American John Isner was battling in a fourth set tiebreaker and reaching the third round by beating Barrere 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6. John Isner has not make it past the fourth round in any of his previous Roland Garros participations, but he tends to do well in Paris. Unfortunately, his fellow American Taylor Fritz did not make the cut, his journey ending with a 6-2, 2-6, 2-6, 3-6 loss to Bernabe Zapata Miralles.
4. Kerber and Khachanov
Kerber continues to impress and kept her bid for the Career Grand Slam alive by beating Jacquemot 6-1, 7-6. There is no doubt that Kerber has the support of the French crowd. Her best performance at Roland-Garros was reaching the quarterfinals in 2018, which she looks to improve upon this year. She meets the Raducanu-conquering Sasnovich next. who eliminated Raducanu today. Khachanov came back back from one set down to secure his place in the third round by beating Hugo Dellien 4-6, 6-4, 7-6, 6-3. He’s been lost in the wilderness for a while since his breakthrough in 2018, and runs like this will help him find his way.
Some highlights of players winning in straight sets, which may have gone under the radar amidst the deciding-set craziness:
- Grigor Dimitrov again won in straight sets, beating Ćorić 6-0, 6-4, 6-3
- Cameron Norrie beat Kubler 6-3, 6-4, 6-3
- Novak Djokovic beat Molcan 6-2, 6-3, 7-6
- Korda beat Gasquet 7-6, 6-3, 6-3, setting up a third-round clash with Alcaraz
- Fernandez beat Siniaková 6-3, 6-2
- Coco Gauff beat Alison 6-1, 7-6
- Anisimova beats Vekić 6-4, 6-1
- Azarenka beat Petkovic 6-1, 7-6
- Bencic beat Andreescu 6-2, 6-4 in what was expected to be a heavyweight clash
- Teichmann beat Danilović 6-4, 6-1