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French Open findings - day 6

Rafael Nadal at the French Open
by Alexandra Willis
Friday 31 May 2013

Wimbledon.com's thoughts on the pick of the action from day six at Roland Garros...

Tough times for Rafa?
Rafael Nadal lost the first set of his first two matches at Roland Garros for the first time in his career during a very cold and wet start to the day on Friday, as his rain-delayed match against Martin Klizan kicked off in not quite the fashion the defending champion would have wanted. Nadal was slow and sluggish as he surrendered the first set 4-6 to the Slovak, before roaring back to win the next three sets 6-3 and set up a third round against Fabio Fognini. Still, all does not seem quite right in Rafa-land. 

Biggest win
Tommy Robredo. 10 years ago, the Spaniard upset world No.1 Lleyton Hewitt at the French Open to reach the third round, having recovered from two sets to love down. On Friday in Paris, the now veteran-esque Spaniard did the same, coming back from a two-sets to love deficit against the always-entertaining Gael Monfils to record an astonishing victory. Monfils was within a point of victory on four occasions, only for the man who was ranked No.471 in the world this time last year to defy him. Robredo triumphed 2-6, 6-7(5), 6-2, 7-6(3), 6-2 in three hours and 46 minutes to set up an all-Spanish fourth-round match with Nicolas Almagro. His celebration was as if he'd won the tournament. Flat on his front in the clay. 

Full steam ahead
Roger Federer, Serena Williams, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Tommy Haas, Marion Bartoli, Richard Gasquet, David Ferrer, Maria Kirilenko, Agnieszka Radwanska, Ana Ivanovic all thundered through their matches in straight sets, some more convincingly than others. 

Marathon matches
There was many a five-setter in Paris on Friday, as John Isner took the distance to beat compatriot Ryan Harrison, winning 8-6 in the fifth, the first time he had ever successfully recovered from a two sets to love deficit. 15th seed Gilles Simon knocked out 18th seed Sam Querrey 2-6, 6-3, 2-6, 7-6(2), 6-2, while eighth seed Janko Tipsarevic also won 8-6 in the fifth, taking his time in beating Fernando Verdasco.

The upset
The wait for the breakthrough continues for Milos Raonic, who was beaten 7-5, 7-6(4), 6-3 by Kevin Anderson. Next up for Anderson is the non-trivial task of David Ferrer.  

Quote of the day
In case you missed it, there's a camera in the shape of an Emirates plane that flies above Philippe Chatrier on occasion. Ryan Harrison had a few words to say about it...

“That camera moves a lot. It’s not just a camera it’s an airplane, so it’s pretty big. It was trying not to get frustrated. I would look up and see it and just kind of smile. It’s one of those things where if you get frustrated and get caught up on it it’s just going to take you out of it. . . .

“Both guys have to deal with it. It’s not going to stop. It’s just going to happen. Only thing you can really do is just smile when it happens and give yourself a second, let it stabilize, and just go for it. It’s just not easy when you see what resembles an airplane that close to you.”

Did she really..
Maria Sharapova tweeted:

I think I need to watch more tennis. Yesterday, had no clue who Paire was, today Chardy?I need to step up my tennis knowledge! 

As someone pointed out, she's no Andy Murray.

Coming up on Saturday

Philippe Chatrier
Alize Cornet v Victoria Azarenka
Zheng Jie v Maria Sharapova
Rafael Nadal v Fabio Fognini
Novak Djokovic v Grigor Dimitrov

Suzanne Lenglen
Benoit Paire v Kei Nishikori
Marion Bartoli v Francesca Schiavone 
Nikolay Davydenko v Richard Gasquet
Jelena Jankovic v Samantha Stosur

Court 1
Marina Erakovic v Sloane Stephens
Bethanie Mattek-Sands v Paula Ormaechea
Tommy Haas v John Isner
Victor Hanescu v Philipp Kohlschreiber

Stanislas Wawrinka v Jerzy Janowicz (Court 2)
Petra Kvitova v Jamie Hampton (Court 7)
Heather Watson & Jonny Marray (Court 17)
Treat Huey & Dominic Inglot (Court 6)
Colin Fleming & Kirsten Flipkens (Court 3)

What did we miss? Let us know in the comments below...

Follow the French Open live on ITV and at rolandgarros.com

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