After the carnage of days 3 & 4 the results overnight stayed relatively true to form with all of the top contenders progressing easily to the third round.
Andy Murray made short work of Marinko Matosevic who was possibly still suffering from dizziness following his roll to the net after his first round victory (view here). Murray then continued to increase people's speculation on who his new coach was going to be “I've spoken to a few people, male and female – not people that are necessarily going to coach me, but who could advise me on certain people,” said Murray. “That's what most players do when they're searching for a coach. Right now in the middle of a Grand Slam is not really the time when I'm making phone calls. That doesn't happen".
Top seed Rafael Nadal continued his solid play at Roland Garros. He dispatched 20-year-old Austrian Dominic Thiem (pronounced “team”) in straight sets. I guess Nadal was just trying to say that clay court tennis at Roland Garros is not a Thiem sport. Nadal has now lost 10 games in 6 sets and has made a total of 34 unforced errors in 287 points played. Against Thiem, Nadal made 19 unforced errors and broke serve 7 times. Thiem was able to break Nadal twice but made 41 unforced errors trying to penetrate Nadal’s baseline game.
5th seed David Ferrer also required less than 2 hours to advance to the 3rd round. He dispatched Italian qualifier Simone Bolelli 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 without dropping serve. A finalist here last year, Ferrer showed solid, consistent play (22 winners, 22 unforced errors) and used his court coverage to frustrate Bolelli into 49 unforced errors.
19th seed Kevin Anderson, a big serving South African, advanced to the 3rd round in straight sets over French wildcard Axel Michon. The 6’8” Anderson hasn’t lost a set in reaching the 3rd round but he now faces the towering Croat Ivo Karlovic for a spot in the Round of 16.
26th seed Feliciano Lopez was surprised by American journeyman Donald Young in 1 hour 55 minutes (6-3, 7-6, 6-3). Young had not won a main draw match at Roland Garros prior to this year. He won this battle of lefties by keeping the ball in play and playing the big points well. Young saved 4 of the 6 break points he faced and converted 4 of the 5 break chances he had against the Lopez serve. Young also spit lots of shots back, giving Lopez more chances to make mistakes, and it worked. Lopez made 48 total unforced errors (that’s 12 free games worth).
Unseeded Ivo Karlovic powered his way to the 3rd round. The 6’11” Croatian Sensation is the first player to reach the 3rd round without losing serve (33 straight holds of serve) and he faced only 1 break point in two matches. With 46 aces and only 3 double faults, his towering serve has proven to be virtually untouchable so far. In his 2nd round match against Austrian qualifier Andreas Haider-Maurer, Karlovic hit 77% of his booming first serves in play and did not face a break point in his 1 hour 47 minute 7-5, 6-3, 6-4 victory.
Unseeded Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, the man who sent Australian Open champ Stan Wawrinka home after the first round, won his second straight match by closing out the 4th set 6-0. As in the first round, Garcia-Lopez was the steadier of the two players (28 unforced errors to 42 for his opponent Adrian Mannarino). Garcia-Lopez broke Mannarino’s serve 8 times and saved 9 of the 14 break points he faced on his own serve.
For all updates on the action at the 2014 French Open please check out www.rolandgarros.com.