Swiatek races to 30th successive win as Medvedev cruises at French Open

By: AFP
Published: 11:51 PM, 26 May, 2022
Swiatek races to 30th successive win as Medvedev cruises at French Open
Caption: Poland's Iga Swiatek reacts after winning against US' Alison Riske at the end of their women's singles match on day five of the Roland-Garros Open tennis tournament at the Court Suzanne-Lenglen in Paris.
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Unstoppable world number one Iga Swiatek racked up her 30th successive victory at the French Open on Thursday as Karolina Pliskova became the sixth top 10 women's seed to exit Roland Garros when she was knocked out by world number 227 Leolia Jeanjean.

Swiatek swept past Alison Riske of the United States 6-0, 6-2 to reach the third round.

The 2020 champion in Paris is on the best streak since Serena Williams's 34-match winning run in 2013 and goes on to face Danka Kovinic of Montenegro for a place in the last 16.

Swiatek raced through the first set against 43rd-ranked Riske in just 21 minutes and was 3-0 up in the second before the American avoided a 'double bagel'.

The Pole still managed to take her record of 6-0 sets in 2022 to a season-leading 15.

"I'm pretty happy to play some solid tennis," said Swiatek.

Eighth-seeded Pliskova, last year's Wimbledon runner-up and a semi-finalist in Paris in 2017, lost 6-2, 6-2 to 26-year-old Jeanjean who cut her teeth as a leading college player in the United States.

Former number one Pliskova joins fellow top 10 seeds, defending champion Barbora Krejcikova, Maria Sakkari, Ons Jabeur, Anett Kontaveit and former winner Garbine Muguruza in failing to get through to the third round.

Jeanjean is the lowest-ranked woman to beat a top 10 player at Roland Garros in 34 years.

Considered a future star at 12, she saw her career abruptly halted by injuries, including a triple dislocation of the knee. 

She then left to study in the United States, only returning to top-level tennis at the end of 2020. 

- 'No regrets' -

"I wanted to come back so as not to regret anything. I think I made the right choice," she said.

Pliskova has made the second week at Roland Garros just once in 11 visits.

"My plan is to fly away," said the Czech when asked about her immediate plans.

Jeanjean will next face Romania's Irina-Camelia Begu who was fortunate not to be defaulted in her 6-7 (3/7), 6-3, 6-4 win over 30th seed Ekaterina Alexandrova.

Begu, in frustration, bounced a racquet into the crowd which then hit a child who burst into tears.

The supervisor was called but the 31-year-old escaped with a warning.

World number three Paula Badosa overcame a scare to defeat 68th-ranked Kaja Juvan of Slovenia 7-5, 3-6, 6-2.

Spain's Badosa, a quarter-finalist in 2021, recovered from a break down in the decider to set up a meeting with 29th seed Veronika Kudermetova.

New York-born Badosa has endured a mediocre clay court season with a semi-final run in Stuttgart but early exits at the elite events in Madrid and Rome.

"That competitive streak that I had lost in recent weeks has come back," she warned.

Also going through was US 11th seed Jessica Pegula who needed eight match points to defeat Anhelina Kalinina of Ukraine 6-1, 5-7, 6-4.

- Medvedev untroubled -

Daniil Medvedev, the second seed, had few problems in making the third round with a 6-3, 6-4, 6-3 win over Laslo Djere of Serbia.

Medvedev, who made the quarter-finals in 2021, goes on to face another Serb in Miomir Kecmanovic, the 28th seed.

Djere hit 39 winners Thursday but was undone by 68 unforced errors.

"I think Laslo may have had an injury so he was making winners or making mistakes so I thought 'OK, well, his pain could go away'," said Medvedev.

Danish teenager Holger Rune reached his first Slam third round with a 6-2, 6-3, 6-3 win over Switzerland's Henri Laaksonen.

The 19-year-old fired 28 winners but managed to avoid a worrying injury when his foot became lodged in a tarpaulin cover on Court 12.

Fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas, the runner-up to Novak Djokovic last year, who had to come back from two sets down to defeat Italy's Lorenzo Musetti in the first round, later faces Czech qualifier Zdenek Kolar, the world number 154.

AFP

Agence France-Presse is an international news agency.