French Open Day 4 recap: Serena, Venus crash out; Djokovic, Federer roll on
PARIS -- On a busy day at Roland Garros, Serena and Venus Williams lost nearly an hour apart, ending hopes of a sister matchup in the third round and paving the way for new favorite Maria Sharapova. On the men's side, Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer easily advanced to the third round.
This post will be updated.
Serena and Venus Williams tumble out of the French Open: Not since 2011 have Serena and Venus lost on the same day at a tournament and never have the women's No. 1 and No. 2 seeds lost before the third round of a Slam. But all that happened Wednesday as 20-year-old Garbine Muguruza dealt Serena her worst loss at a major, beating her 6-2, 6-2, and Venus fell to 19-year-old Anna Schmiedlova 2-6, 6-3, 6-4. Both youngsters showed tremendous poise in closing out victories against all-time greats. They'll meet in the third round.
Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic cruise: No problems for the two highest seeds in the bottom half of the draw. Federer beat Diego Schwartzman 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 to improve to 20 against qualifiers at Slams. Jeremy Chardy could have been a tricky opponent for Djokovic, but the Serb was all business in a 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 victory.
Maria Sharapova overcomes early deficit: Sharapova had everyone wondering if this would be a replay of Wimbledon's wacky Wednesday when she fell behind a break early to Tsvetana Pironkova. But the Russian broke back and took the first set 7-5, then cruised in the second set. Now favored to win with Serena out, she'll face either Monica Niculescu or Paula Ormaechea in the third round. (Niculescu led Ormaechea 6-2, 2-0 when play was suspended.)
American Taylor Townsend upsets No. 20 Alize Cornet: Up a set and 4-1, Townsend looked to be on her way to a straight-set victory. But Cornet, the French No. 1, rallied to pull even. Townsend, 18, then led 5-1 with four match points in the third, but Cornet saved them all, had a run of nine consecutive points won and got to 4-5. Finally, though, Townsend served out a 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 victory to become the youngest American in the third round since Ashley Harkleroad in 2003. She'll play Carla Suarez Navarro next.
More seeds fall: No. 16 Sabine Lisicki took a fall early in her match and retired down 6-1, 3-0 with a right wrist injury. No. 12 Flavia Pennetta blew a 7-5, 3-0 lead over Johanna Larsson to lose 5-7, 6-4, 6-2. And No. 20 Alexandr Dolgopolov had a two-sets to love lead and lost 1-6, 3-6, 6-3, 6-0, 6-2 to Marcel Granollers.
Photo of the day
Vine of the day
Introducing Garbine Muguruza:
Press conference of the day
The full English transcript from Flavia Pennetta:
Q. Hi. Are you disappointed to lose so early in the tournament?
FLAVIA PENNETTA: No, I'm very happy. What do you think?
Q. You've had a good season, but it didn't click today. Any explanation?
FLAVIA PENNETTA: No. It just didn't click. That's it.
Tweets of the day
Early bird catches Le Worm @rolandgarros :) Thanks Pavel Lebeda for the photos pic.twitter.com/J9NShUYyAV
— stepec78 (@stepec78) May 28, 2014
How good is Taylor Townsend! #talent
— Andy Murray (@andy_murray) May 28, 2014
The good news is @GarbiMuguruza's selfie game is generally strong. https://t.co/n3bOw4cMvH
— Bryan Armen Graham (@BryanAGraham) May 28, 2014
Maria. Sharapova. Cartwheels. — Jon Wertheim (@jon_wertheim) May 28, 2014
Congrats 2 my opponent today. She did her thing. I'm proud of her. I wish her well. Until next time. There's always tomm & I will be ready. — Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) May 28, 2014