French Open 2021, women's semi-finals LIVE: Krejcikova takes first set; Pavlyuchenkova into final
French Open 2021, women's semi-finals LIVE: Krejcikova takes first set; Pavlyuchenkova into final
Barbora Krejcikova 7-5, 4-5 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Krejcikova will now serve to remain in the second set. Mistake from Sakkari to begin and she hits her return long. Krejcikova then misses a shot, firing her forehand into the doubles alley. Two aces out of absolutely nowhere for Krejcikova. She then pushes Sakkari wide and forces her into making a mistake to hold serve.
Barbora Krejcikova* 7-5, 3-5 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
Can Krejcikova really fight her way back into this set? It looked like a lost cause at one point, but she's won three games in a row now. Krejcikova hits her return long. Sakkari then pushes her back, before charging towards the net and unleashing a slice into the corner of the court. 30-0. Another mistake from Krejcikova. Her backhand is hit straight into the net. A last mistake and Sakkari holds to love.
Barbora Krejcikova 7-5, 3-4 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Barbora Krejcikova* 7-5, 2-4 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
Maria Sakkari wins the first two points of her service game, and she still looks very much in control. Krejcikova does well to push Sakkari wide with a backhand, and Sakkari's return is fired into the net. Another mistake from Sakkari, 30-30. Oh, nice work from Sakkari there, she does well to keep up with Krejcikova's attempts to force her wide and wins the point with a forehand winner. She makes an error on the next point though, and it's deuce. Oh, great work from Krejcikova there! She moves Sakkari left and right and forced the Greek star into making a mistake under pressure. She has advantage! And now she's broken serve! She did really well there to test Sakkari.
Barbora Krejcikova 7-5, 1-4 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Krejcikova looks exhausted. Maria Sakkari sends back her serve with real power on it, and she's left looking flat-footed. 0-15. Krejcikova tries a drop shot and pills it off quite superbly. 15-15. Krejcikova miscues her backhand and sends her shot flying long and wide. Sakkari then messes up a return, 30-30. Krekcikova charges towards the net and gets another point. 40-30. Another mistake, and it's deuce. Advantage Krejcikova. Sakkari fails to get her forehand onto the court, and Krejcikova finally holds serve in this second set.
Barbora Krejcikova* 7-5, 0-4 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
What's Krejcikova got in her locker now? Will she write this set off, or will she try to fight back and rescue it? Sakkari appears to be distracted by a noise from the crowd, and she misses a shot. Krejcikova makes a mistake of her own, and it's 15-15. A mistake apiece from either player, it's 30-30. Krejcikova misses a running forehand, and then a backhand, and now Sakkari looks like she's well and truly back into this contest.
Barbora Krejcikova 7-5, 0-3 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
What can Krejcikova do from here? She's already showed in the match that she can claw her way back from a deficit. She does well to win the first point with a forehand winner down the line, it was some great footwork from the Czech star. A couple of points for Sakkari and a point for Krejcikova follow, 30-30. Double fault, and now Sakkari has a chance to go two breaks up in the second set! Mistake from Krejcikova, and Sakkari, despite being a set down, looks like she really could be shaping up for a remarkable win.
Barbora Krejcikova* 7-5, 0-2 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
OH MY WORD! Krejcikova unleashes a backhand down the line, and it is placed right on the paint, that was a perfect shot. She then hits a return slightly wide, and at first, she isn't convinced that missed, but upon walking over, she agrees with the umpire's decision. She then wins the next point after pushing Sakkari out wide with a fast forehand, and Sakkari can only send it wide. Point for Sakkari, 30-30. Krejcikova attempts to continue a rally with a backhand slice, but she miscues it, and it flies wide. Sakkari is up 40-30 and if she can hold, it would be a great game. Yep, she holds, she has the early lead!
Barbora Krejcikova 7-5, 0-1 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
First point of the second set goes to Maria Sakkari, as Krejcikova hits long. She wins the second one with an inch-perfect backhand winner. Mistake from Sakkari and now it's 15-30. Oof, sweet strike off the forehand from Krejcikova, and that just zipped past Sakkari. 30-30. Krejcikova then hits a shot long of the baseline, and Sakkari now has breakpoint. She works Krejcikova over, and bullies her into making a mistake. Sakkari is not letting her first set disappointment get to her. She seals the early break!
Set 1: By the numbers!
Barbora Krejcikova wins the first set 7-5!
Great rally for the first point and it ends with a mistake from Sakkari, who sends a forehand flying into the doubles alley. 0-15. Sakkari makes it 15-15 with a backhand winner, that was a great combo she just hit Krejcikova with. Ah, a double fault from Sakkari, and it's 15-30. Her first serve was narrowly wide, and she went over to look at it, but couldn't spot anything out of order. Oh, Krejcikova has two set points! Sakkari hits long. Krejcikova wins the first set! She was able to weather a couple of tough spells and she comes out on top.
Barbora Krejcikova 6-5 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Krejcikova wins the first point after Sakkari hits long. Another mistake from Sakkari, and it's 30-0. This match really is incredibly close. Ace from Krejcikova, it's 40-0. She holds to love as Sakkari hits a forehand long. Sakkari will serve to stay in the first set.
Barbora Krejcikova* 5-5 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
Two big errors from Krejcikova, and Sakkari is up 30-0. Sakkari is looking really dangerous at the moment, and if she can carry on this momentum, it could be very difficult for Krejcikova to find her way back. Sakkari wins her eighth consecutive point, and in a blink of an eye, she's gone from 5-3 down to 5-5.
Barbora Krejcikova 5-4 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Sakkari wins the first point with a hammer of a forehand, and she lets loose a roar! She's in a spot of bother, and she's trying to get herself fired up. Krejciokova misses a shot, and Sakkari shouts again. Sakkari has really psyched herself up, she hits a forehand winner and she's got herself three breakpoints. Krejcikova, meanwhile, seems a bit perturbed, and she commits a double fault to bring the match back on serve. Still, Sakkari will need to hold to stay in the set.
Barbora Krejcikova* 5-3 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
BARBORA KREJCIKOVA IS ON FIRE! She races to breakpoint, and then absolutely bamboozles Maria Sakkari with a delightful little dink over the Greek star. She will serve for the first set!
Barbora Krejcikova 4-3 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Sakkari will be kicking herself right now. She could have been in a great position, and she let it slip with some costly mistakes. She gets the first point of the game as Krejcikova hits a return into the net. Sakkari then misses an attempted inside out forehand, which lands in the doubles alley. Another mistake from Sakkari. She looks a lot less assured than she did about 15 minutes ago. Sakkari hits long, and Krejcikova is just sitting back and allowing her opponent to make mistakes. Fourth and final mistake of the game from Sakkari. Krejcikova holds.
Barbora Krejcikova* 3-3 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
Sakkari will be ruing her missed opportunity now, but she's still a break up in the contest. She starts off with a great backhand winner to make it 15-0. Mistake from Sakkari, it's 15-15. Aaah, another mistake from Sakkari. That was sloppy from the Greek star. Krejcikova helps her out with a mistake of her own. 30-30. Krejcikova continues to make costly mistakes. Sakkari is now up 40-30. Oof, a rare winner from Krejcikova, it's a dropshot that Sakkari cannot even get close to. Deuce. Oh my, excellent return from Krejcikova, that was fired back towards Sakkari with real pace on it. Advantage to the Czech. Deuce again, Krejcikova attempts a moonball but it's hit long. Krejcikova then gets advantage again, and she hits a backhand behind Sakkari, who couldn't turn quick enough. Sakkari misses a slice, and we're back on serve!
Barbora Krejcikova 2-3 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Oh my word, Maria Sakkari really is lighting up the court with her gorgeous shot placement. She wins the first point with a lovely backhand winner that is placed right up on the baseline. A mistake by Krejcikova now, and Sakkari is building up a head of steam in this game. Kejcikova meanwhile is yet to hit a winner, four sets in. She's not started too well. Sakkari makes a mistake to give away a point, but then she absolutely hammers a loose second serve down the line with a backhand to give herself two breakpoints. Just one breakpoint now, Sakkari fires a forehand into the net. Ah, another mistake from Sakkari. She could have had a massive lead by now. Deuce. Ace from Krejcikova, that was right on the line and Sakkari had the umpire come over and take a look at it, but it was to no avail. Advantage Krejcikova. Oh, excellent defense from Sakkari, she was in a very vulnerable position there, but managed to get the ball back into the court, and her flat-footed Czech opponent hit wide. Advantage Krejcikova again. This would be a great hold under pressure, something to really build on. She can't make the most of it though, it's a double fault. Back on deuce. She misses another first serve, but really goes for it with her second and manages to make Sakkari miss her return. She holds with a one-two punch that sees her take the point with a cross-court forehand winner.
Barbora Krejcikova* 1-3 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
Ahh, nice idea from Sakkari, but the implementation is just a little bit off. She tries to catch out Krejcikova with a dropshot, but it just clips the top of the net and falls back onto Sakkari's side. Two excellent quickfire points from Sakkari, and it's 30-15. A mistake from Sakkari, who hits a forehand long, and it's 30-30. Oh wow! Sakkari goes for a risky shot, a running forehand that spins out of court and then back into it! What a shot! 40-30 for the Greek star. Error from Krejcikova and Sakkari now has a nice little lead.
Barbora Krejcikova 1-2 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
Krejcikova is right back in this. She wins the first point of her service game and then Sakkari makes it 15-15 with a crisp backhand winner. Krejcikova's turn to make a mistake, she hits a backhand into the net. She recovers her composure quickly and then forces Sakkari into making a mistake. 30-30. These two are showing no mercy to the poor tennis balls in play, they're whacking them around with aplomb! Point to Krejcikova, she could manage to get the first service hold of the match so far here. Might have to wait a little longer, her backhand is wide and it's deuce. A missed forehand, and now Sakkari has advantage. Another unforced error from Krejcikova, and it's the third consecutive break of the first set!
Barbora Krejcikova* 1-1 Maria Sakkari (*denotes next server)
This is a great start from Sakkari, can she build on this early break? Her first serve is an absolute belter, and Krejcikova's desperate return is miles wide. Mistake from Sakkari, she hits a backhand long. 15-15. The first long rally of the match ends with a beautiful dropshot from Sakkari, who has really started this contest in some style. Another backhand missed by Sakkari though, 30-30. Oh, another mistake, this time it's a forehand that's fired into the net. Krejcikova already has a chance to break back. She's done it! Sakkari completely miscued what should have been an overhead smash, and it's back on serve.
Barbora Krejcikova 0-1 Maria Sakkari* (*denotes next server)
And away we go. Krejcikova will get us underway with the serve. Sakkari wins the first point of the match, after her Czech opponent hits long. Sakkari then makes a mistake of her own, sending a relatively straightforward backhand into the net. Krejcikova replies with another error, hitting long again. Oh my, excellent power-hitting from Sakkari, she forces a mistake out of Krejcikova and now she has two break points. Krejcikova hits long, Sakkari breaks in the very first game!
Get to know your semi-finalist: Barbora Krejcikova
Krejcikova, the 2018 French Open doubles champion, hopes to shed the tag of a doubles specialist by winning in singles too.
Mentored by the late Jana Novotna, the 33rd-ranked Krejcikova had never won a Grand Slam singles match before last year's Australian Open.
"I never really wanted to be a doubles specialist. Everybody, they just put a label on me like, 'Yeah, you play doubles, you are a doubles specialist,'" said Krejcikova, also into the last four in doubles with partner Katerina Siniakova.
She has defeated fifth seed Elina Svitolina and 2018 runner-up Sloane Stephens, overcoming crippling anxiety ahead of her match with the American that led to the Czech locking herself in the physiotherapist's office.
Alright then, before the second match of the evening begins, let's get to know your semi-finalist: Maria Sakkari
For a nation where football and basketball typically rule, Greece will have two players in the semi-finals after Stefanos Tsitsipas made it to the men's last four.
After an early exit in Rome, she got sick of tennis and made a quick island getaway. It helped restore her passion for the sport. Sakkari, who beat 2020 runner-up Sofia Kenin before shocking reigning champion Iga Swiatek.
Sakkari, whose mother Angeliki reached the third round at the French Open in 1985 and 1987, could break into the top 10 if she lifts the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen this weekend.
Set 2: By the numbers!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova wins the match 7-5, 6-3!
That backhand has really let Zidansek down today. She misses another one, and Pavlyuchenkova wins the first point. Pavlyuchenkova then makes it 30-0 with a thunderous cross-court backhand winner. Just two points away from a win, she makes a terrible mistake, and gives Zidansek a little glimmer of hope. 30-15. Oh, excellent serve! Very, very fast, and Zidansek could do nothing but watch her return sail long. Two match points for Pavlyuchenkova. SHE IS THROUGH TO THE FINAL! HER FIRST-EVER GRAND SLAM FINAL! What a win from the Russian! Zidansek has had a great tournament, after failing to get past the first round on all her previous showings in a Grand Slam, but today, she just wasn't good enough.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 7-5, 5-3 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
Point apiece for either player. This game is massive. Pavlyuchenkova misses a forehand. She was in such a promising position just minutes ago. If she can break again, she could still wrap this up in two sets. Big forehand winner from her, and then Zidansek misses a shot to give her opponent one precious break point. Pavlyuchenkova does it! She's broken! Zidansek hit a forehand just wide of the line. The Russian will now serve for the match.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-5, 4-3 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Mistake from Pavlyuchenkova on the first point, it's 0-15. Could she be succumbing to the pressure? Oh no, a double fault. 0-30. Zidansek smells blood, but Pavlyuchenkova is quick to regain her composure and she makes it 15-30 with a forehand winner. An excellent, high-quality rally then, and it's Zidansek's turn to hit a forehand winner. The Slovenian has two break points. A third point in a row that is settled with a forehand winner, this time it's Pavlyuchenkova again. Just the one break point for Zidansek. It's enough though, yet another double fault from the Russian! Back on serve!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 7-5, 4-2 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
This really is a crucial game for Tamara Zidansek. If she's broken here, there's probably no way back into the contest for her. She starts by taking the first point after Pavlyuchenkova hits a return into the net. Oof, excellent dropshot from Zidansek! She's not landed too many today, but that one was perfect! Pavlyuchenkova tries a dropshot of her own, but there's too much bounce on it, and Zidansek sends it out for a forehand winner. Zidansek then wraps up the hold with a backhand winner. Quick game, that was over in minutes.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-5, 4-1 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Zidansek looks really tired, and she's lost a bit of pace. Pavlyuchenkova, on the other hand, looks the most composed she has all match. She's making less errors than she did in the first set. She wins the first couple of points with two blistering forehands, both of those were hit with real venom. Oh my, she almost wrapped up the game with a backhand winner, but it was just an inch too long. No worries though, she seals it with a forehand winner on the next point, and she's only a couple of games away from her first Grand Slam final!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 7-5, 3-1 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
Bit of a break here, and there's confusion as to why exactly we've hit pause on the match. Well, I guess we'll never know. Pavlyuchenkova makes a mistake on the first point, but then immediately atones for it by unleashing a running forehand winner that is perfectly placed into the very corner of the court. Zidansek attempts a drop shot, but it's hit far too wide. 15-30. If Pavlyuchenkova can break right back, it should put a serious dent in Zidansek's morale. Zidansek misses yet another backhand, that could have been a winner but it's hit way too low and it doesn't clear the net. Two break points for Pavlyuchenkova, and another mistake from Zidansek means it's another break!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-5, 2-1 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Can Zidansek break back like she did in the first set at 5-3 down. She doesn't have a lot of time left in this contest. A point apiece for either player, 15-15. Zidansek then wins two back-to-back points, the second with a smash to give herself two break points. A first double fault from Pavlyuchenkova, and Zidansek is back in this second set! We're on serve!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 7-5, 2-0 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
Zidansek hits wide on the first point, 0-15. A long-ish rally ends after an attempted drop shot from Pavlyuchenkova is hit straight into the net. 15-15. Pavlyuchenkova finds the net again, and she looks quite frustrated in herself. She has made a fair few mistakes today. Luckily for her, so has Zidansek. Zidansek misses a backhand, and it's 30-30. A wild miss from Pavlyuchenkova, 40-30. Pavlyuchenkova then makes it deuce by forcing Zidansek to run this way and that, before the Slovenian makes a mistake. Oh yes! Gorgeous low inside-out forehand from Zidansek! She has advantage, and it really is crucial for her to hold. Zidansek has had 13 forehand winners to Pavlyuchenkova's three. Aah, another double fault from Zidansek. Deuce again. Oof, feather touch slice from Pavlyuchenkova there! What a gorgeous shot, she takes all the pace off of Zidansek's shot and the ball just drops like a stone. Advantage! Oh wait, we're back on deuce, Zidansek replies with yet another forehand cross court winner! Zidansek misses a shot, and Pavlyuchenkova has advantage. A fatigued backhand from Zidansek, and Pavlyuchenkova breaks! She's got her opponent on the ropes
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 7-5, 1-0 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Okay, what can Zidansek do here? She's already shown in the tournament that she can fight back from a first-set loss, she did so in her third round match against Katerina Siniakova. A point apiece to begin, 15-15. Pavlyuchenkova's next serve is close to Zidansek's body, and the Slovenian hits her return long. Pavlyuchenkova then forces Zidansek wide and hits the resulting lob for a smash down the line. 40-15. Pavlyuchenkova then tries to dig out an inside-out forehand, but it's hit wide. Zidansek displays some more of her speed on the next point, reaching a slice with more than enough time to hit a forehand winner. Deuce. Advantage Zidansek, mistake from Pavlyuchenkova. This would be some way to start a comeback. She hits a return long though, it's back to deuce. Pavlyuchenkova is drawn into a rally with Zidansek, but she manages to get the advantage after Zidansek appears to hit the ball with the frame of her racket and send it flying into the stands. Pavlyuchenkova converts the advantage and hold under quite some pressure!
Set 1: By the numbers!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova wins the first set 7-5!
Alright, what does Pavlyuchenkova have in her locker now? Can she get the break and wrap this set up? First point goes Zidansek's way, courtesy of a winner, but she terribly miscues a shot on the second point to gift it to Pavlyuchenkova. Pavlyuchenkova then gets another point with a brilliant counter-punching forehand that forces Zidansek into a mistake. Zidansek misses a first serve, and her second serve isn't great, allowing Pavlyuchenkova to wrest control of the rally and force her into making a mistake. Pavlyuchenkova has two set points. Another first serve missed from Zidansek. Oh no, the pressure got to the Slovenian, she's committed a double fault. Pavlyuchenkova takes the first set after 52 minutes.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-5 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
At the moment, it looks like Pavlyuchenkova might rue the fact that she failed to take the first set when she was up 5-3. Zidansek plays some powerful tennis to win the first point, and Pavlyuchenkova replies with a hammer of a forehand to win the second. 15-15. These two are absolutely pelting the ball with huge forehands. Zidansek hits a couple of accurate and fast forehand winners to get two break points. If she can break here, she has a great opportunity to give herself the early advantage. She misses a backhand, and it's down to just the one break point. Pavlyuchenkova then serves out wide, and Zidansek is caught out and left looking flat footed. Deuce! Advantage Pavlyuchenkova, Zidansek misses a forehand return. This match has been going back and forth every few minutes, and currently, Pavlyuchenkova looks to be in the ascendancy. Meh, scratch that. Advantage again, Pavlyuchenkova hits into the net. Advantage Pavlyuchenkova, Zidansek hits a forehand long. Pavlyuchenkova holds, another mistake from Zidansek! Zidansek will serve to stay in the first set.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 5-5 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
Zidansek is really trying to up the tempo of this contest and attack it with some aggression and intent. She gets the first couple of points with some high octane tennis, before giving away one point to her opponent with a poorly-executed drop shot. Pavlyuchenkova then hits wide. 40-15. Zidansek tries to put a bit of power into a backhand, but ends up overshooting by quite a bit. Pavlyuchenkova misses a pretty straightforward return, it's all level at 5-5.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 5-4 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Great play from Zidansek! Lovely change up, she goes for a cannon of a forehand winner and connects perfectly. 0-15. Pavlyuchenkova then manages to pull off a really well-placed second serve, and Zidansek's return is long. 15-15. Ace from the Russian. This is some blink and you'll miss it serving. A rare longer rally ends with a mistake from Pavlyuchenkova. Zidansek really pressured her into making the error. Can Pavlyuchenkova steel herself and claim this first set? She puts some pressure on Zidansek with a drop shot, but the Slovenian shows great athleticism to reply to it and then pull off a lovely lob. That was some next level tennis. Zidansek could break here! But she doesn't, she hits a shot long and it's deuce. Zidansek then races to the net to reach a drop shot, and she manages to send it just past the reach of Pavlyuchenkova to get an advantage. Zidansek's court coverage is off the charts, she's racing around full tilt. Zidansek tries to hit a low, flat backhand winner, but it's a bit too low and a bit too flat. We're back on deuce. Zidansek then shows some real aggression, to open up her body and unleash an inside-out forehand winner. Advantage! Wait, she's done it! She's broken back! We're back on serve!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 5-3 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
The forehand really is the key weapon for both players, they're trying to wrest control of the match with it. Zidansek claims the first point and then takes the second with an inventive drop shot. Another point for the Slovenian, she's up 40-0 in this game. Pavlyuchenkova fights back and claws a point back. Zidansek then hits one long, 30-40. Zidansek then tries a slice, but Pavlyuchenkova charges toward the net and forces her opponent to attempt a lob, which goes over the baseline. Deuce! Uh oh, Zidansek slips up and commits a double fault to give Pavlyuchenkova the advantage. Pavlyuchenkova does what she needs to, and gets the break! She'll serve for the first set!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 4-3 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Great first serve from Pavlyuchenkova, she's up 15-0. Another phenomenal serve, she pushes Zidansek out wide and then absolutely hammers her lofted return down the line for a winner. Great forehand out wide from Zidansek there, she put tremendous topspin on it to take it past her opponent. 15-30. Zidansek pressures Pavlyuchenkova into another error. 30-30. Zidansek hits a return long. These points are just zipping by, there have been no real rallies so far. Another error from Zidansek. Pavlyuchenkova holds.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 3-3 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
Zidansek started so brightly, but she's tailed off a bit. She misses a backhand, and it's 0-15. Is she starting to feel the pressure a little. She gets a point back, and then executes a delightful ace! That had some serious width and spin to it, it just kept moving away from Pavlyuchenkova. Zidansek then gets another point with an excellent cross court forehand, before Pavlyuchenkova hits a running forehand wide. It's a hold for the Slovenian!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 3-2 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Zidansek nails a hell of a backhand winner, an inch to the left and that was wide! Excellent shot from the Slovenian. She lets herself down a little on the next point though, her backhand doesn't have enough height on it, and it bounces off the net and back into her side of the court. 15-15. She then misses another backhand, hitting it wide. If she's landed that one, it was definitely her point, Pavlyuchenkova was not reaching that. Another point for the Russian. 40-15. Zidansek can't return the serve, and Pavlyuchenkova holds!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 2-2 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
Zidansek fails to get a forehand over the net on the first point, and it's 0-15. She then completely miscues a backhand and sends it way wide of the court. 0-30. Make that 0-40, it's a firm forehand winner down the line from the Russian. Zidansek fights back with an inch-perfect forehand winner. 15-40. Pavlyuchenkova hits one wide, and then sends a forehand flying long. Great work from Zidansek to claw her way back to deuce. She misses an overhead smash though, and Pavlyuchenkova has advantage. Pavlyuchenkova gets the break! We're back on serve!
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 1-2 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Pavlyuchenkova looked very shaky in the first two games, but she replies with some fierce tennis! A hard smash gets her the first point, and then she follows up with three beautiful serves to hold to love.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova* 0-2 Tamara Zidansek (*denotes next server)
Great start from Zidansek, can she build on this? She wins the first point after a Pavlyuchenkova return flies into the net. And the second point as well, it's 30-0. Oof, Zidansek is playing some excellent tennis! She absolutely hammers a forehand winner and then wraps up the game in double quick time. It's an early lead for the Slovenian.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 0-1 Tamara Zidansek* (*denotes next server)
Aaaand we're off! Pavlyuchenkova will serve after Zidansek won the toss and chose to receive. An error apiece from either player to begin things, and it's 15-15. Pavlyuchenkova then pulls off a delightful one-two combo with a serve out wide and a cross-court backhand winner. 30-15. The match's first real rally comes on the next point, and Pavlyuchenkova wins it after Zidansek hits a shot wide. Two errors from Pavlyuchenkova now, and we're on deuce. Early pressure from the Slovenian. She gets the advantage with a firmly struck forehand down the line. We're back on deuce now. Pavlyuchenkova misses her first serve. Her second serve isn't great, and Zidansek puts the pressure on her to get advantage again. Pavlyuchenkova then misses another shot, and it's a very, very early break!
Both players are out on the court! It's almost go time!
Get to know your semi-finalists: Tamara Zidansek
Zidansek comes from Slovenia, a country of just two million people. The world number 85 had fallen at the first hurdle in two prior visits to Roland Garros, entering the tournament with a dismal Grand Slam main draw record of 3-8.
A three-time junior snowboard champion, Zidansek started the tournament with a win over 2019 US Open champion Bianca Andreescu.
Who are you backing tonight?
French Open women's semi-finals get underway in less than half an hour.