French Open Day 4: Title Favorite Bertens Retires after Four Games

WTA Italian Open Quarterfinal Predictions

The fourth day of the French Open featured the start of the second round with 16 matches on the women’s side. Second seed Karolina Pliskova looked sharp in a 6-2, 6-2 rout of qualifier Kristina Kucova. The 2017 Roland Garros semifinalist needed just 56 minutes to dispatch the Slovak, firing 29 winners and landing 76% of her first serves in play. Pliskova advances to face 31st seed Petra Martic in the third round after the Croat stormed past home favorite Kristina Mladenovic 6-2 , 6-1.

Last year’s runner-up Sloane Stephens is also into the last 32 after a 6-1, 7-6 (3) victory over Sara Sorribes Tormo. The pair had played a grinding two tiebreak affair in Charleston earlier this year that last almost two and a half hours. It looked to be heading in almost the opposite direction as the seventh seed wrapped up a quick first set before rallying from a break down three times in the second to eventually clinch the match in a tiebreaker.

Fourth seed Kiki Bertens suffered heartbreak in her second round encounter with 21-year-old Viktoria Kuzmova. The Slovak led 3-1, 40-15 before the tournament favorite was forced to retire with a gastrointestinal illness. Kuzmova advances to the third round of a Major for the first time in her young career and will square off with 26th seed Johanna Kontawho overcame American wild card Lauren Davis 6-3, 1-6, 6-3.

Garbine Muguruza had a relatively easy time with Johanna Larsson, winning 6-4, 6-1 in just 66 minutes. The 2016 French Open champion faces ninth seed Elina Svitolina, who got a walkover from countrywoman Kateryna Kozlova after the World #67 suffered a rib injury. Elise Mertens and Anastasija Sevastova booked a third round clash with easy wins, the 20th seeded Belgian routing French wild card Diane Parry and the 12th seeded Latvian taking care of Mandy Minella 6-2, 6-4.

Carla Suarez Navarro was made to work for her victory, getting past Shelby Rogers 6-1, 6-7 (4), 6-3. The 28th seed advances to face Marketa Vondrousova after the Czech won an all-teenage battle against Anastasia Potapova 6-4, 6-0. Another American to fall was Jennifer Brady who, despite saving a handful of match points in the second set, ultimately lost to Lugano champion Polona Hercog 6-3, 6-7 (8), 6-4.

In a pair of unseeded matches, Veronika Kudermetova, who upset 13th seed Caroline Wozniacki in the first round, beat Zarina Diyas 7-5, 6-1 while Kaia Kanepi needed three sets to see off Shuai Zhang 6-7 (4), 6-0, 7-5. The Russian and Estonian will now face each other for a spot in the Round of 16.

Finally, 23rd seed Donna Vekic shook off a rough first set to beat Rebecca Peterson 1-6, 6-1, 6-2. Her third round opponent has not been determined yet as 15th seed Belinda Bencic and Laura Siegemund were deadlocked at 4-4 in the third set before darkness halted play following 6-4 sets being split, the German winning the first, the Swiss taking the second from a break down.

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