Serena Williams upset at French Open

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China Daily, May 30, 2012
Adjust font size:
A shell-shocked Serena Williams crashed to her earliest defeat at a grand slam when she was beaten 4-6 7-6 6-3 by French darling Virginie Razzano in a pulsating first round showdown at Roland Garros on Tuesday.

High drama as Serena crashes out of French Open

Serena Williams of the US reacts during her match against Virginie Razzano of France during the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris May 29, 2012.[Photo/Agencies]

Never before had the 13-times grand-slam champion, one of the pre-tournament favourites for the title, lost in the first round of a major but on Tuesday she paid the price for a performance she summed up as full of "errors".

The fifth seed was two points from victory at 5-1 up in the second set tiebreak but her game inexplicably collapsed as she lost six points in a row to lose the set.

The American appeared close to tears during the changeover at the end of the set and struggled to shake off her near-miss in the decider as she allowed her 111th ranked opponent to romp into a 5-1 lead.

But Williams, who believes herself to be the ultimate fighter in the sport, refused to throw in the towel and scraped back to 5-3 as Razzano struggled to deliver the knock out punch.

Just when it seemed as if Razzano would join a long list of players who choke at their home grand slam event, the Frenchwoman played her heart out.

A cramping Razzano held her nerve in a jittery, action-packed ninth game of the final set, which lasted 25 minutes, stretched to 12 deuces and featured five break points.

There was even a moment of controversy as Razzano was penalised by the umpire for letting out a loud squeal mid-point, leading to a loud chorus of boos from the fans.

The Frenchwoman took it all in her stride before finally winning the contest on her eighth match point.

Such was the drama of the match that Razzano was even made to wait before she could celebrate her glorious victory as the umpire had to climb down from her chair to confirm Williams's groundstroke was long.

Razzano, who lost her fiance to a brain tumour a year ago, jumped up in joy after surviving three hours and three minutes of topsy-turvy tennis that delighted the hollering crowd in Court Philippe Chatrier.

Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from