Ashleigh Barty shares disappointment for facing Serena Williams

02 June, 2018, 20:42 | Author: Greg Lawrence
  • Serena Williams steps out in 'Wakanda' uniform at French Open

Serena leads her head-to-head record with Sharapova 19-2, with the Russian's last win coming at the 2004 WTA Tour Championships.

The 31-year-old Russian, who is seeded 28th after missing the French Open the past two years, will next play the victor of the third-rounder between 23-time major champion Williams and 11th-seeded Julia Goerges.

"I feel like a superhero when I wear it", she added.

Sharapova, who has won two of her five majors at Roland Garros, could next face Serena Williams in what would be their 22nd career meeting.

The world number one has openly admitted to struggling to cope with pressure of big matches in the past, but says she is feeling more relaxed on court.

Ten-time champion Rafael Nadal breezed into the third round and a clash against childhood friend Richard Gasquet.

However, Williams came roaring back to level the match, and then maintained her intensity to take the third set 6-4 and move into the third round.

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After a 90-minute rain interruption at 5-5 in the first set Muguruza, the 2016 victor, blew 2009 champion Kuznetsova away in the tie-break and went on to win 7-6 (7/0) 6-2.

"Next up for Serena is 17th seed Ashleigh Barty".

Last year's victor, Latvia's 20-year-old Jelena Ostapenko, notably crashed out in her first round match against Kateryna Kozlova.

"If I were to play my former self, I'm not sure I would win".

However, Williams recovered early in the second in this enthralling encounter winning 6-3 on a packed Philippe Chatrier. It's impossible to know quite what level her fitness is at, either, because she hasn't had to play two weeks of competitive tennis in nearly 18 months. She said: "People would say I was born a guy, all because of my arms, or because I'm strong". While clay isn't the best for Pliskova's service game, she's going to be a tough out if she continues to get free points and gets her first serve in play at a high percentage.

Williams is just getting back on to the court after giving birth to her daughter last September. "I want to play my game, regardless of who is on the other side".

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