Tennis Prose



Greatest Upsets Of French Open History

Today’s shocking upset by unheralded Thiago Seyboth Wild over no. 2 seed Daniil Medvedev in five sets ranks up there with some other previous giant surprises at Roland Garros…

King of Clay Rafael Nadal lost in the fourth round to 23 seed Robin Soderling. Rafa had won four straight French Opens and beat Soderling on clay a month earlier 61 60.

17 year old boy wonder Michael Chang beat Ivan Lendl in the fourth round of 1989 Roland Garros, and then continued the miracle run to win the title vs Stefan Edberg in the final. The 15 seed was down two sets to love and a break in the third before stunning Lendl in the marathon five set duel.

17 year old Kathy Horvath defeated Martina Navratilova in the fourth round at 1983 Roland Garros. Martina won three Grand Slams in 1983 and her only loss at a major was this three set thriller to Horvath. Navratilova’s match record in 1983 was a near perfect 86-1.

Gustavo Kuerten of Brazil was ranked 66 in the world the year he won the title in 1997. On his way to winning his first Grand Slam title, Guga beat Thomas Muster, Sergi Bruguera and defending champ Yevgeny Kafelnikov in the QF.

Also in 1997 Iva Majoli surprised the tennis world by beating Martina Hingis in the final. In 1997 and 1998 Hingis won four out of five Grand Slams and became the youngest world no. 1 in WTA history at age 16. Hingis achieved a match record of 71-5 in 1997, and this was her only defeat on clay or grass that season. Majoli never came close again to winning a Grand Slam title.

Serena Williams was leading Virginie Razzano 5-1 in the second set tiebreaker but blew the set and then lost the third set to the 111-ranked French woman at 2012 Roland Garros first round. It’s the only time in the career of Serena she lost at a Grand Slam in the first round.

86th ranked Tathiana Garbin of Italy slayed Justine Henin in the second round of 2004 Roland Garros. From 2003 to 2007 the dominant Belgian powerhouse had won four major titles in Paris. This was the signature moment of Garbin’s career.

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  • Matt Segel · May 31, 2023 at 9:08 am

    And that is why sport is sport. What a surprise. Sinner has a good chance to make a deep run.

  • Scoop Malinowski · May 31, 2023 at 10:09 am

    Sinner is overdue. But everybody is dangerous, as Seyboth Wild just reminded us.



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