Petra Kvitova, Sofia Kenin Through To Fourth Round; Aryna Sabalenka Out

Czech seventh seed Petra Kvitova overcame a slow start to beat Canadian teenager Leylah Fernandez and reach the French Open fourth round.

Two-time Wimbledon champion Kvitova trailed 5-1 in the opening set but stormed back to win 7-5 6-3 against the impressive 18-year-old.

She will face China’s Zhang Shuai for a place in the quarter-finals.

Earlier, Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin advanced with a 6-2 6-0 win over Romanian qualifier Irina Bara.

But eighth seed Aryna Sabalenka was beaten by Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur, 7-6 (9-7) 2-6 6-3.

It is the first time Kvitova, 30, has reached the fourth round at Roland Garros since 2015.

The opening few games were error-strewn from Kvitova, who struggled against a fellow big-hitting left-hander.

Fernandez won the girls’ singles title at Roland Garros last year and looked assured as she won five games in a row in the first set.

However, Fernandez could not find a first serve and Kvitova pounced, winning six games on the bounce to close out the opener.

Kvitova still had to fight in the second set, saving four break points before a forehand winner secured victory.

“She pushed me a lot. I really had to fight until the end. I managed to win it somehow,” Kvitova said.

Jelena Ostapenko, the Latvian 2017 Roland Garros champion who knocked out second seed Karolina Pliskova in the previous round, lost 6-4 6-3 to Paula Badosa.

The unseeded Spaniard will face German Laura Siegemund next after the 32-year-old beat Croat 13th seed Petra Martic 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 6-0.

  • Sabalenka out but Kenin breezes through

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Sofia Kenin beat Garbine Muguruza in this year’s Australian Open final

Kenin earlier won 12 games in a row to beat Bara, hitting 32 winners and saving 10 breakpoints.

She will face Fiona Ferro next after the Frenchwoman’s 7-6 (9-7) 4-6 6-0 win over Patricia Maria Tig of Romania.

Belarusian Sabalenka has been a top-16 seed at the past seven Slams but has failed to make it to the second week at each tournament.

She lost a fluctuating match against Jabeur, who has reached the fourth round in Paris for the first time.

Jabeur had triple set point at 6-5 in a scrappy first set but was broken, before storming back from a 5-1 deficit in the tie-break to take the opener in 57 minutes.

However, a refocused Sabalenka took the second in just 19 minutes to force a decider.

Sabalenka saved three match points but sent a forehand long to hand Jabeur victory.

The 26-year-old will next play either 2016 champion Garbine Muguruza or American Danielle Collins.

Jabeur arrived for her post-match news conference with a face mask that had a cartoon of men’s fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas on, with Jabeur joking she was “Team Tsitispas”.


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