Paris: Five matches to watch on day five at the French Open on Thursday —
Murray faces no-shake Klizan
World No 1 Andy Murray, the runner-up to Novak Djokovic last year, tackles fiery Martin Klizan of Slovakia for a place in the third round. World No 50 Klizan has already hit the headlines in Paris by being accused of faking an injury in his opener against French wildcard Laurent Lokoli. "He has a lot of talent. He can hit a big ball and is quite unpredictable on the court," said Murray who beat Klizan in three sets when they met in Vienna last year. Klizan is bidding to reach the third round in Paris for just the second time after a similar run in 2014.
Head-to-head: Murray leads 1-0
Del Potro, Almagro — wounded warriors
Juan Martin del Potro, the 2009 US Open champion, is playing in Paris for the first time in five years after a long battle with wrist injuries pushed him to the brink of retirement. He made the quarter-finals then and was a semi-finalist back in 2009. Nicolas Almagro is no stranger to the operating theatre. He missed seven months in 2014 with an ankle injury which saw the former world number seven tumble to 71. The 31-year-old Spaniard has made the quarter-finals in Paris three times. Almagro won their only previous meeting on clay at the Santiago Challenger in 2006.
Head-to-head: Del Potro leads 3-1
All Italian clash for Seppi, Fognini
Andreas Seppi and Fabio Fognini meet for the 10th time in a battle of 30+ Italians. Seppi, now 33, won the pair's first five meetings but new dad Fognini, 30, has swept the last four, all on clay, although they haven't faced each other since 2013. Fognini, the 28th seed, had his best Slam performance in Paris making the quarter-finals in 2011. Seppi's best is a last-16 run in 2012.
Head-to-head: Seppi leads 5-4
Hobbling Halep sees improvements
Third seed Simona Halep has been dealing in percentages since her arrival in Paris. The 2014 runner-up said she was "50-50" at the weekend due to an ankle ligament injury picked up in Rome. But after her opening round win over Jana Cepelova she said she was "80 percent recovered". On Thursday, she faces German world number 102 Tatjana Maria who is bidding to make the third round for the first time.
Head-to-head: First meeting
Garcia, Paquet give French hope
When she was just 17, Caroline Garcia made her Roland Garros debut and was a set and two breaks up on Maria Sharapova before the Russian battled back for victory. Andy Murray suggested Garcia was a world number one in the making but since that 2011 performance, Garcia is still waiting to get out of the second round in Paris. But the world number 27 has a golden opportunity to achieve that goal when she faces her 260th-ranked compatriot Chloe Paquet who marked her Slam debut with an impressive win over in-form Kristyna Pliskova in the first round.
Head-to-head: First meeting
Published Date: Jun 01, 2017 01:20 pm | Updated Date: Jun 01, 2017 01:20 pm