French Open Day 5: Matches to Watch

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Kristina Mladenovic vs Samantha Stosur Court Philippe Chatrier

2012 semi finalist Stosur kicks off the action on the main court against the highly rated Frenchwoman Mladenovic. Both players bagelled their opponent in round one on their way to straight sets victories – Stosur over Kimiko Date Krumm and Mladenovic over Lauren Davis. Stosur is a dark horse for the tournament with her past clay credentials but has the misfortune of a very tough draw. Mladenovic was the champion of the Girls Singles of the French Open in 2009 but is yet to pull out any statement wins on clay to date in her career. Meanwhile, Stosur made the quarter finals of Rome most recently but disappointingly exited against Victoria Azarenka despite dominating much of the match.

Samantha Stosur in 3

Na Li vs Bethanie Mattek-Sands Court 1

Li became the first Asian player to win a grand slam when she took the title in 2011, defeating Francesca Schiavone in straight sets but failed to push on, disappointing in slams over the next year including a shock fourth round loss in Paris to Yaroslava Shvedova. However, she bounced back in Melbourne making the final and could well have beaten Victoria Azarenka if not for the injuries suffered in the final. Both players defeated Spanish players in straights in round one to seal their second meeting of the season. On that occasion, Li defeated Mattek-Sands 6-4 6-3 on her way to the Stuttgart final.

Na Li in 2 

Fernando Verdasco vs Janko Tipsarevic Court 1

This one has the potential to go five with Tipsarevic ripe for an upset, given his disappointing form for much of the year. Both players saw off French wildcards in straight sets with very little trouble, with Tipsarevic picking up just his third clay win of the year to push his overall record to 12-11. Despite meeting six times, of which Verdasco has won just two, they have not played on the preferred clay of Verdasco. The standout match of these was their Australian Open meeting in 2011 where Verdasco came from two sets down to defeat the Serbian in round two.

Fernando Verdasco in 5

Robin Haase vs Jerzy Janowicz Court 7

This match has the potential for fireworks with Jerzy Janowicz always good for an entertaining match. The Pole fought off Albert Ramos in a tricky tie while Haase finally ended his infamous 17 tiebreak losing streak in the opening round with Kenny de Schepper the unfortunate victim as Haase won in four sets. Janowicz showed in Rome he can play up to the big occasion with wins over two top 10 players but must also continue to tough it out against lesser opponents. He most likely should but it will be much tougher in a probable round three against Stanislas Wawrinka.

Jerzy Janowicz in 4

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