Jeanjean keeps choking on break points on Begu’s serve, but she is playing for her life now, thwacking a winner down the line to claim another. Begu hits her own winner to level it up. The home crowd are partisan, loud for this time of day, though there’s a groan when a trademark drop shot hands Begu the advantage. Then Jeanjean nets and at 5-1 up in the second set, the Romanian is one game away from winning the match.
Begu is now 4-1 up, and Jeanjean is heading out, the glory of her second-round win over Pliskova washed away. The player who missed six years with a knee injury had made a glorious comeback but now she’s struggling. She nearly gets it back to 4-2, but there is agony as she misses a big winner on a break point.
The early news is not good for the home contingent, with Leolia Jeanjean already staring down the barrel of defeat from Irina-Camelia Begu, she lost the first set 6-1, and is a break and 2-1 down to the Romanian right now.
Tumaini Carayol profiles Carlos Alcaraz, the latest hottest new thing, and maybe the one to take down the aforementioned old guard. He destroyed Sebastian Korda yesterday.
His vast hand skills and shotmaking talents are strung together by his supreme athleticism and defence, qualities that have produced innumerable incredible points that have further underlined his talents. Since his triumph in Madrid, the hype surrounding Alcaraz has gone into overdrive, and he arrived in Paris tipped by some bookmakers as the tournament favourite.
The two biggest guns got their stuff done yesterday and we may soon see them do battle, though rather earlier than usual.
Bonjour, tout le monde. Back to Roland Garros we go, and the stands may well be swelled by Liverpool and Real Madrid fans picking up returns ahead of the big one later tonight. Those paying attention on Thursday will recognise most of the cast, with Iga Swiatek, the no 1 seed, in devastating form so far. Can Danka Kovinic of Montengero halt the Pole’s charge? Léolia Jeanjean became France’s darling when beating Pliskova in the second round, and now she faces Irina-Camelia Begu, whose main moment of note so far has been to launch a racquet that made a small child cry. Qinwen Zheng, the Chinese player, delivered one of the shocks of the tournament in beating Simona Halep, even allowing for Halep’s panic attacks, and Zheng will take on Nice’s Alizé Cornet.
To the men’s singles for today, and the headliners are Gilles Simon, the oldest homme in the tournament, who takes on Marin Cilic, and Daniil Medvedev, the Russian still a struggler on clay, who faces the young Serb, Miomir Kecmanovic. Mikael Ymer, the Swede, who beat plucky Brit Dan Evans, will take on Stefanos Tsitsipas, the Greek another who doesn’t quite look comfortable on the surface.
All that and much more throughout the day.