Welcome Back, Ana
After her sole Grand Slam title in 2008, Ana Ivanovic seemed to lose her way a little bit. She endured several years of mediocre Grand Slam results and her ranking yo-yoed in and out of the top 20. Now she's back in her first Grand Slam semifinal since 2008 when she won at Roland Garros and she's playing like she belongs. Next up for Ivanovic is an inspired Lucie Safarova.
Lucie Safarova, who's in her 13th year as a pro, has long been a quality player and over the past two years, she's making sure everyone knows it. Last year she booked her first every semifinal berth at Wimbledon and now she's back in the semis at Roland Garros after a solid quarterfinal win. She's yet to lose a set in singles and she's still in the doubles draw as well. Safarova brings a 5-3 head-to-head into her match against Ana Ivanovic.
After her quarterfinal win, Safarova is guaranteed to move into the WTA top ten, joining her countrywoman Petra Kvitova. According to the WTA's Kevin Fischer, it will be the first time there are two Czechs in the top ten since 1989.
Stan the Unbreakable
In a bit of a surprising result, Stan Wawrinka swept aside his countryman Roger Federer in straight sets. Stan played very solid tennis, hitting 43 winners to 28 unforced errors while Federer managed just 28 winners to 26 unforced errors. The most telling stat of all (courtesy of Carl Bialik, Ben Rothenberg, and tennisabstract.com), though, is that Federer failed to break his opponent's serve at least once for the first time since the 2002 US Open. His opponent that day? Belarusian Max Mirnyi.
Play on Philippe Chatrier was delayed for more than 30 minutes as wind damaged part of the stadium's structure, causing a significant piece of metal debris to fall into the stands. An official statement from the tournament said that the debris was a sheet of metal from the scoreboard and that fortunately there were only three minor injuries. The incident also seemed to interrupt Tsonga's momentum as he prepared to serve for the second set. He still managed to take the set a few games later, but Nishikori came out of the delay playing much better and turned a rout into a tight match.
Breathe, Paris, Breathe
Kei Nishikori came out for his quarterfinal against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga looking listless, out of sorts, and flat. With a semifinal berth on the line, Tsonga dashed out to a 6-1, 5-2 lead before the aforementioned delay caused by a large piece of falling debris. After the delay, Nishikori looked rejuvenated and battled back to 5-4 before Tsonga finished the second set. Then things started to really come apart for the Frenchman as Nishikori stormed through sets three and four to even the match at two sets all. Paris held its collective breath, but Tsonga was able to grab an early break, keep his composure, and win a nail-biter to get into the semifinals for the second time in three years