PARIS, June 2, 2018
The ladies headlined Saturday’s French Open third round matches in the later afternoon. Three-time Roland Garros champion Serena Williams put together a commanding performance to see off 11th favourite Julia Görges 6-3, 6-4 and set up a fourth-round battle with Maria Sharapova. The unseeded US-American withstood 11 aces, hitting three of her own to prevail in just over an hour and 15 minutes.
Serena leads the head-to-head record against Sharapova with 19 victories and just two defeats. In her post-match press conference, Williams had plenty to say about the Russian in response to Sharapova’s 2017 autobiography.
“I think the book was 100% hearsay, which was a little bit disappointing,” Serena told. “The book was a lot about me. I didn’t expect to be reading a book about me, that wasn’t necessarily true. I didn’t know she looked up to me that much or was so involved in my career.
“We are each on a comeback for two totally different reasons. I was one of the few people when she had her whole drug incident that said that she was brave to say something. I didn’t have anything negative to say about Maria.”
World No. 1 Simona Halep powered past former semi-finalist Andrea Petkovic by winning the last eight games to return to the round of 16, 7-5, 6-0. The 26-year-old from Romania capitalized on six of her 11 break point opportunities to advance in one hour and 28 minutes.
“I play better and better day by day. I can say that today I really felt the ball, and the game,” Halep said after the match.
“The way that I finished pretty strong gives me confidence. I can say it was the best match here at this tournament.”
Next up for Halep will be No.16 seed Elise Mertens, who dropped just four games in defeating Daria Gavrilova, 6-3, 6-1 in her third round match.
Further Read: Our “Petko-Story”
No.12 seed Angelique Kerber battled past clay favorite Kiki Bertens to reach the second week of Roland Garros for the first time since 2014. The 30-year-old German outpointed her opponent 93-84 in one hour and 52 minutes, winning 7-6(4), 7-6(4).
Kerber will next take on No. 7 seed Caroline Garcia in the fourth round. The 24-year-old is the last French player standing in the singles draw and eased past Irina-Camelia Begu 6-1, 6-3 earlier in the day.
David Goffin recovered from the brink of defeat to record a five-set victory and dampen the mood among the French supporters as they see their third home hope lose today in the men’s singles. The Belgian saved four match points to rally past Gael Monfils 6-7(8), 6-3, 4-6, 7-5, 6-3.
“I came back to the court today very well. I was able to impose my game, my tactics. And David played very well,” said Monfils. “He was able to fight back at the decisive moment… Congratulations to him. It’s really fantastic what he did, and that’s really the token of a champion.”
Goffin will now play Marco Cecchinato of Italy.
Two top 10 players will meet in the fourth round as Juan Martin Del Potro and John Isner each won their third round matches in straight sets to face each other. Del Potro leads the head-to-head record 6-4, but Isner has won their last two matches, including the semi-finals of the Miami Open earlier this year.
#RG18 last 16 👀
🇪🇸 Nadal v Marterer 🇩🇪
🇦🇷 Schwartzman v Anderson 🇿🇦
🇭🇷 Cilic v Fognini 🇮🇹
🇺🇸 Isner v Del Potro 🇦🇷
🇧🇪 Goffin v Cecchinato 🇮🇹
🇷🇸 Djokovic v Verdasco 🇪🇸
🇦🇹 Thiem v Nishikori 🇯🇵
🇷🇺 Khachanov v Zverev 🇩🇪
Choose your last eight…
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) 2. Juni 2018