Ashleigh Barty, the first seed, was pressed by Bernarda Pera in the first round. To win in three sets, Barty focused on consistency, making only 25 unforced errors as she focused on lengthening points. Her first serves were not in fine form, however. She landed only 66 percent of them, and when they did land, she was less likely to win the point than on her second serves. The 2019 French Open champion, Barty will need to address this issue.
Magda Linette, ranked No. 45, struggled at the beginning of 2021, losing five of her first six matches. She has turned it around just in time, gaining some confidence as she reached the semifinals of the Internationaux de Strasbourg last week in France. Now, she will try to avenge the loss by her doubles partner, Pera, and upset Barty to equal her best major result.
Court 7 | 10 a.m.
Aslan Karatsev vs. Philipp Kohlschreiber
Philipp Kohlschreiber, ranked No. 132, was once a regular presence in the fourth round of major tournaments. But in the past eight Grand Slam events, he has not made it past the second round, and this once fearsome player now seems to be edging toward the end of his career. That’s not to say that he is without hope. In the first round, he beat Fernando Verdasco, a clay-court specialist and former world No. 7.
Aslan Karatsev, the 24th seed, burst into the public eye with an outrageous run to the semifinals of the Australian Open as a qualifier, knocking out three seeded players before being dismissed by Novak Djokovic. It was not just a flash in the pan. He followed that with his first ATP Tour title at the Dubai Open and big victories on clay over Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev. Karatsev’s consistency can be tested over the best-of-five format if Kohlschreiber imparts pressure with aggressive baseline play.
Here are a few more matches to keep an eye on.
Elina Svitolina vs. Ann Li; Suzanne Lenglen Court, 5 a.m.
Sofia Kenin vs. Hailey Baptiste; Court 14, 5 a.m.
Novak Djokovic vs. Pablo Cuevas; Suzanne Lenglen Court, 10 a.m.
Rafael Nadal vs. Richard Gasquet; Philippe Chatrier Court, 3 p.m.