French Open: Samantha Stosur eases into the second week

Samantha Stosur progressed to the fourth round of the French Open yet again after looking on fire against the American qualifier Bethanie Mattek-Sands in the third round, triumphing in two straight sets as the Australian put in an emphatic display to triumph.

Stosur strolls to win the first set

Stosur had the perfect start to the match as she took advantage of three unforced errors committed by Mattek-Sands to break serve in the opening game, taking the early lead. Defending semifinalist points here in Paris, Stosur has done fairly well during this year’s clay court tournaments but has to carve a deep run here to prevent herself from falling too much in the rankings. Serving with great precision and attacking the forehand of Mattek-Sands, Stosur managed to easily consolidate the break and looked to be on fire.

Samantha Stosur celebrates a point won | Photo: Jimmie48 Tennis Photography
Samantha Stosur celebrates a point won | Photo: Jimmie48 Tennis Photography

The Australian’s amazing start continued in the third game when she still managed to dictate play, breaking serve for the second successive time as she took a double break advantage in the first set. Mattek-Sands finally got herself on the scoreboard by breaking straight back after Stosur played a loose service game, hitting a couple of unforced errors. Despite serving two aces, the world number one player in doubles failed to send in some consistent serves throughout the game, resulting in Stosur earning yet another break of serve to regain the huge lead.

This time, Stosur managed to hold onto her serve as her groundstrokes looked very solid which helped her to be just a game away from winning the first set. Allowing Mattek-Sands to get a consolation game, the former world number four eventually closed out the impressive set with an ace after 30 minutes of play, being just one set away from reaching the second week in Paris.

Samantha Stosur in action | Photo: Adam Pretty/Getty Images Europe
Samantha Stosur in action | Photo: Adam Pretty/Getty Images Europe

Stosur clinches four straight games to get the win

Unforced errors continued to plague Mattek-Sands as she hit three of them in the opening game of the second set, with Stosur carrying over the momentum from the first set to get off to the best possible start. However, Mattek-Sands gave the perfect reply when she broke straight back with some great returns, with this being possibly the best game she played in the whole match.

After a string of consecutive service breaks, it was Stosur who finally managed to regain the rhythm on her serve as she came from 0-30 down to narrowly hold her serve and consolidate the break, taking a comfortable lead in the second set. With three double faults in the seventh game, Mattek-Sands slowly faltered as Stosur came up with some world-class aggressive tennis to seal the win after just 1 hour and 10 minutes of play, looking like she is in red-hot form.

Bethanie Mattek-Sands hits a volley | Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images Europe
Bethanie Mattek-Sands hits a volley | Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images Europe

Hitting just a mere 15 winners coupled with a massive 36 unforced errors certainly cost Mattek-Sands greatly, seeing herself get broken a total of seven times in the match after winning just 4/31 of second serve points (13 percent) throughout the 70 minutes encounter. This win sends the former Roland Garros runner-up into her sixth appearance in the second week of the French Open, having gone 4-1 in her five previous matches at that stage.

Samantha Stosur applauds the crowd after the win | Photo: Jimmie48 Tennis Photography
Samantha Stosur applauds the crowd after the win | Photo: Jimmie48 Tennis Photography

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