Published: Thu, June 06, 2019
Sport | By Ruben Hill

French Open draw opens up for all-business Barty

French Open draw opens up for all-business Barty

Having advanced to last 16 for the first time in career, the 42nd-ranked Czech will next face Madison Keys of the United States, as the 14th seed saw off Russian qualifier Anna Blinkova 6-3, 6-7 (5), 6-4.

Unpredictably, this match's results fell secondary as far surprises go, as No. 1-seeded Naomi Osaka's bid to capture a French Open title ended after a crushing defeat to the No. 42-ranked Katerina Siniakova.

"She had such a short period of time to prepare", Mouratoglou said after the loss to Kenin.

"I felt the chance because her first and second round were tough".

Raising hopes of a first Australian singles triumph at Roland Garros in more than 40 years, Barty displayed grit and poise on Monday to end the giant-killing run of unseeded American Sofia Kenin 6-3 3-6 6-0.

Talking about her disappointment, the top seed admitted, "It would go from 1 to 10 and I'm like at a 100 right now".

Tennis great Rod Laver is picking Novak Djokovic to win his fourth straight Grand Slam tournament, just ahead of 11-time Roland Garros champion Rafael Nadal. And for the first time in her illustrious career, she claimed the first two Grand Slam titles of a season. American teen Amanda Anisimova continued her French debut hanging on to beat Irina-Camelia Begu 7-6, 6-4 to advance.

Ash Barty's potential path to a French Open title has been blown wide open after Serena Williams and world No.1 Naomi Osaka both lost on the same day the Australian calmly booked a spot in the fourth round.

Barty is vying to become the first Australian champion in Paris since Margaret Court in 1973 but the level-headed 23-year-old isn't thinking beyond Monday. "For me this is something that I have wanted to do forever, but I think I have to think about it like: If it was that easy, everyone would have done it".

Next up for Siniakova will be American Madison Keys, a 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 6-4 victor over Russia's Anna Blinkova, with the victor of that contest to take on either Kenin or Barty in the quarterfinals. Kenin made most of Serena's unforced errors to make her way into the fourth round, where she will face Australia's Ashleigh Barty.

Defending champion Simona Halep is the highest seed remaining in the women's draw. Keys has won five of her last six matches on clay court. "I'm very confident on my return, so I didn't think something negative. I'm just so happy now".

"I didn't expect it at the start of the week but I've been preparing well, playing well and enjoying myself", Barty told Eurosport after her victory. Barty faced continued pressure throughout the set, just about avoiding being broken again, though herself failed to convert two break points when 3-5 down, with the American holding on to take a third set point and send the match to a deciding set.

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