French Open 2017: Kristina Mladenovic in grudge tie, Caroline Wozniacki faces Jelena Ostapenko

Paris: In a wide-open French Open women's draw, Kristina Mladenovic leads home hopes into Tuesday's quarter-finals while former World No 1 Caroline Wozniacki tackles ballroom dancing Latvian Jelena Ostapenko:

Uncharted territory ahead for Wozniacki, Ostapenko

Caroline Wozniacki or Jelena Ostapenko have the chance to break new ground with a semi-final berth at stake. Two-time US Open runner-up Wozniacki is through to the last-eight at Roland Garros for the first time since 2010.

Denmark's Caroline Wozniacki returns the ball to US Catherine Bellis during their tennis match at the Roland Garros 2017 French Open on June 2, 2017 in Paris. / AFP PHOTO / GABRIEL BOUYS

File photo of Caroline Wozniacki. AFP

For Ostapenko, who turns 20 on Thursday, this marks the first time she has advanced to the second week at a Grand Slam.

But the Latvian will fancy her chances of extending her breakthrough run after defeating the Dane twice already on clay this year, in Prague and Charleston.

Wozniacki's status as World No 1 — a rank she held for 67 weeks from 2010 to 2012 — was overshadowed by her failure to capture one of the sport's top prizes.

Her last title came at the Hong Kong Open in October, although she has reached finals this year in Doha, Dubai and Miami.

Head-to-head: Ostapenko leads 3-0

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Wozniacki says: "I feel like I can play well on any surface, and I really believe that. I have won tournaments on the red clay, too, so it's not like it's foreign to me."

Ostapenko says: "When I was growing up, my idol was Serena, because I really like the way she played, and she's like a great champion. So I was kind of following her the whole time. When I was a child, I was always watching her matches."

Mladenovic, Bacsinszky have grudge

French star Kiki Mladenovic, the 13th seed who knocked out defending champion Garbine Muguruza in the last-16, is looking to be the first home semi-finalist in six years against 30th seed Timea Bacsinszky who made the last-four in 2015. Earlier this year, Mladenovic accused Bacsinszky of gamesmanship after losing a tense three-set battle in the Fed Cup. Bacsinszky drew the ire of her French rival after seeking medical help for a knee injury during a critical passage midway through the deciding set. When she returned, she took a 21-shot rally and claimed eight of the next nine points to seize control of the match. A day earlier, Bacsinszky had left the court during her win over Alize Cornet  for treatment to a wasp sting.

Head-to-head: Series level 1-1

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Mladenovic says: "I don't see things like that. It's not, you know, because it's Timea that I must get my revenge. That's not my mindset. It would be a negative approach. I don't prepare my matches out of revenge. I want to go out there and win every match."

Bacsinszky says: "I know that the two French players were very critical. I'm not quite sure why. It wasn't a wasp trick. I was really stung by a wasp. I had to manage the pain. At night my nose clogged up and my eyes went all puffy. I had to take anti-allergy medicine."


Published Date: Jun 06, 2017 12:36 pm | Updated Date: Jun 06, 2017 12:36 pm


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