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French Open findings - day 8

Tommy Robredo at Roland Garros
by Alexandra Willis
Sunday 2 June 2013

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

History-maker
Not since 1927 has a man come back from two sets to love down in three consecutive matches at a Grand Slam. But on Sunday at Roland Garros, Tommy Robredo became the first man since Henri Cochet at Wimbledon in 1927 to pull off such a feat of athletic endurance as he rallied from the worst deficit in tennis for the third match in a row, beating Nicolas Almagro 6-7(5) 3-6 6-4 6-4 6-4. Even more remarkable is the fact that Robredo, at the age of 35, was ranked outside the world's top 400 a year ago. Next up for the sunglasses-wearing Spaniard is David Ferrer. 

The streak goes on
Just as Julien Benneteau did at Wimbledon last year, for almost four hours on Philippe Chatrier, a Frenchman endangered Roger Federer's run of consecutive Grand Slam quarter-final appearances. Gilles Simon came back from dropping the first set against Federer in their fourth round encounter to push the former champion to five sets. But, just as he did against Benneteau, Federer found the extra level (and an around the post winner) when he needed to, winning seven straight games to calim the fourth set and go up a break in the fifth. Simon did his best to stay with Federer, but ultimately in vain. Federer progresses to his 36th consecutive Grand Slam singles quarter-final, 3291 days since he last failed to reach the last eight, beaten by Gustavo Kuerten in the third round of Roland Garros in 2004. It was also Federer's 900th career match win. 

The upset
Svetlana Kuznetsova certainly knows how to play the unpredictable card. The 2009 champion has hit a purple patch on the red clay, firing off 48 winners as she upset eighth seed Angelique Kerber 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals. Kuznetsova will next play Serena Williams, whom she beat at Roland Garros the year she triumphed. Could lightning strike twice?

“I feel like I love the game and I have no reason to stop. I love to work. I love to sweat on the court. I like to put everything in to (surpass) myself day by day when you're in the heat, where you're struggling. I didn't want to stop anyway. Myskina stopped (when she decided to have a) baby. Dementieva stopped because she decided to stop. My time is not to stop yet,” she said.

Motoring
Serena Williams had not too much difficulty in beating Roberta Vinci 6-1 6-3 to extend her unbeaten streak to 28 matches and reach the last eight for the eighth time in Paris, while David Ferrer scorched past Kevin Anderson at the beginning of the day. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga saw off Viktor Troicki in symmetrical fashion, 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 and reach the Roland Garros quarters for the second straight year. "I'm playing well and all the lights are green," he said. "Everything is positive and I have nothing to lose." Agnieszka Radwanska meanwhile had perhaps the easiest win of the day, brushing aside Ana Ivanovic 6-2, 6-4 to add a French Open quarter-final to her list of achievements for the first time. 

Big win
Sara Errani. The 2012 runner-up proved why she's had the success she's had on the red stuff, battling a blocked diaphragm to defeat Carla Suarez Navarro in three tempestuous sets 5-7, 6-4, 6-3 to reach the last eight. Her reaction said it all.

Spotted on site
Leonardo di Caprio, complete with flat cap and goatee, and Forrest Whitaker, fresh from the Cannes Film Festival. 

Andy Murray is still watching women's tennis
"Not a large crowd on lenglen for ivanovic radwanska.. Where is everyone?" he tweeted. Well done. 

Coming up on Monday

Philippe Chatrier
Francesca Schiavone v Victoria Azarenka
Novak Djokovic v Philipp Kohlschreiber
Rafael Nadal v Kei Nishikori
Sloane Stephens v Maria Sharapova 

Suzanne Lenglen
Tommy Haas v Mikhail Youzhny
Bethanie Mattek-Sands v Maria Kirilenko
Stanislas Wawrinka v Richard Gasquet
Jamie Hampton v Jelena Jankovic 

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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