Defending French Open champion Iga Swiatek saw her run toward back-to-back titles come to a sudden end on Wednesday after No. 17 seed Maria Sakkari knocked her out in their quarterfinal matchup.
Sakkari scored a 6-4, 6-4 win to end the 20-year-old Swiatek’s bid for a second Grand Slam title.
Swiatek’s win streak comes to an end
Swiatek entered the match having won her last 11 matches at the French Open, all without dropping a set. She looked to continue that success early against Sakkari, jumping out to a quick 2-0 lead in the first set.
But Sakkari won eight of the next 10 games before Swiatek took a medical timeout while trailing 2-0 in the second set. It wasn’t enough to change the tide of the match, and Sakkari earned her first Grand Slam semifinal berth.
“I couldn’t have done it without my team and their support, and I just want to thank them,” Sakkari said after her win. “We still have a long way to go, of course, but we made a huge step today.”
Swiatek has maintained a busy schedule this season, playing eight tournaments, including the French Open. That brought her two titles, but may have also contributed to fatigue at Roland Garros.
“I’m happy with the results that I have, but also I’m constantly at work,” Swiatek said. “For sure we’re going to try to chill down, chill out a little bit.”
Swiatek’s loss could have opened up the French Open draw for American sensation Coco Gauff, but the 17-year-old couldn’t hold an early lead against the unseeded Barbora Krejcikova, who prevailed 7-6 (8-6), 6-3. Gauff led 5-3 in the first set and had five set points, but she was unable to put the set away. Krejcikova then took a 5-0 lead in the second set before Gauff staged a comeback that, ultimately, fell short.
Nadal, Djokovic to play in French Open semifinal
In men’s play, both Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic won in four sets to set up another clash between the two all-time greats in the French Open semifinals. Nadal dropped his first set of the tournament, but finished strong to beat Diego Schwartzman 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-0. Meanwhile, Djokovic defeated Matteo Berrettini 6-3, 6-2, 6-7 (7-5), 7-5.
Nadal and Djokovic will face off on Friday. Nadal, the 13-time French Open champion, comes in as a -265 favorite over Djokovic (+215) in that matchup.
|French Open Semifinal Odds (via FanDuel Sportsbook)|
|Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova: -164||Tamara Zidansek: +136|
|Barbora Krejcikova: +146||Maria Sakkari: -178|
|Novak Djokovic: +215||Rafael Nadal: -265|
|Alexander Zverev: +184||Stefanos Tsitsipas: -225|
But first, the women will take center stage at Roland Garros on Thursday. All four participants are making their Grand Slam semifinal debuts, and as a result, the winner will take home their first French Open title.
In the first semifinal, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova (-164) will battle Tamara Zidansek (+136). In the second, Sakkari (-178) enters as the favorite over Krejcikova (+146).