Incredible and indestructible Alizé Cornet. The Frenchwoman released one of her mentally strongest matches at Roland-Garros to eliminate Jelena Ostapenko Thursday evening in the second round of the French Grand Slam. Tenacious, the 40th in the world went the distance, and controlled the revolt of the Latvian, to beat her in the best of three sets (6-0, 1-6, 6-3), after 1h41 of the match. In front of an audience of Philippe-Chatrier who were first muted, then completely won over to her cause, the Niçoise relied on the crowd to make the difference at the end of the match. She will play revelation Qinwen Zheng in the 3rd round. Attention, the Chinese beat Simona Halep a few hours earlier.
You had to love rambling tennis encounters to fully appreciate this Cornet-Ostapenko. No, it wasn’t a great match, but the last set gave it another flavor. He alone summed up the meeting. We saw a Jelena Ostapenko in Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde mode – so either in automatic watering mode or in winning shots machine mode – and a magnificent Alizé Cornet of abnegation. Maline, the Habs have always recited their plan. She didn’t do everything well, but she won the famous important points.
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Four break points saved decisive at the start of the 3rd
With her defensive game plan, the Frenchwoman has always been able to overplay her rival. This was the case during the last game where Ostapenko completely cracked under the pressure of the public and somewhat offered the match to Cornet. The winner of the 2017 edition finished the match with 48 unforced errors, against only 5 for Cornet. It’s huge. Figures worthy of a duel in four or five sets for men. Ostapenko brought rain and shine. And it rained a lot on the Philippe-Chatrier on Thursday evening.
Cornet, quarter-finalist of the last Australian Open, won this match at the very beginning of the last act. After crossing the second like a ghost – the fault of Ostapenko – she restarted the machine to break the entry. At 1-0, she saved four break points behind her serve, made a double break, before gritting her teeth.
Hit in the left adductor on the first point at 4-2 – nothing too serious, she confided afterwards to the broadcaster Amazon Prime Video – she finished the match slightly handicapped. At the level of his lateral movements in any case, it was no longer the same thing after this incident. Before serving at 5-3, she even scared the stadium after receiving a shock to the painful area after a slip. More fear than harm. But still, it will have to be taken care of.
Cornet’s qualification allows French tennis to have five representatives in the 3rd round. There are two for the gentlemen with Hugo Gaston and Gilles Simon and three for the ladies with Diane Parry, Léolia Jeanjean and Alizé Cornet. While she is still considering whether or not to stop at the end of the season, the 32-year-old player is sublime in Grand Slam this year. We want more, we even want more.
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