French Open Wednesday: Stars On Court

Maria Sharapova will look to avoid being Tsvetana Pironkova's latest upset victim, and Serena Williams continues her title defense at Roland Garros on Wednesday.

Published May 27, 2014 12:14

French Open Wednesday: Stars On Court
Angelique Kerber

PARIS, France - Two of the hottest players on clay, Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams, are among those in second round action at the French Open.

Wednesday, Second Round

Court Philippe Chatrier
[7] Maria Sharapova (RUS #8) vs. Tsvetana Pironkova (BUL #42)
Head-to-head: Sharapova leads 4-0
Though Maria Sharapova has never lost a match to Tsvetana Pironkova and just one set out of nine, she should be wary of someone with such a history of pulling off upsets at Grand Slams. Those include wins over Venus Williams at the 2006 Australian Open, 2010 Wimbledon and 2011 Wimbledon and over Vera Zvonareva also at 2011 Wimbledon. The Bulgarian scored three of her 11 Top 10 wins during her run to her first WTA title in Sydney earlier this year.

Sharapova is 13-1 on clay this season, highlighted by titles in Stuttgart and Madrid, and 48-4 in her last 52 matches on the dirt. Six of her last seven WTA titles have come on clay and she trails just Serena Williams and Anabel Medina Garrigues for most WTA clay court titles among active players.

Court Suzanne Lenglen
[1] Serena Williams (USA #1) vs. Garbiñe Muguruza (ESP #35)
Williams leads 1-0
The latest notch in Williams' Grand Slam résumé was her 250th win at a major in her opener here. She has never failed to reach the second week at a Grand Slam when seeded first, but things could get interesting for her in the form of Spanish No.2 Garbiñe Muguruza in the second round and possible sister Venus in the third.

The 20-year-old Muguruza is clearly a rising star, as her season already has included her first WTA title at Hobart, a run to the final at Florianopolis, a semifinal outing at Marrakech and her best Grand Slam showing in reaching the fourth round of the Australian Open. She has three Top 10 wins to her credit, but has never faced a World No.1.

Court 2
[8] Angelique Kerber (GER #9) vs. Varvara Lepchenko (USA #58)
Lepchenko leads 4-1
Is Varvara Lepchenko the favorite against fellow lefty Angelique Kerber, who is ranked almost 50 spots higher? Their head-to-head would indicate so, though Kerber did finally get a win in their last encounter in the third round here last year, a three-setter as all but one of their clashes have been.

At her last event before Roland Garros, Lepchenko routed Sloane Stephens en route to the third round of Rome for her 11th Top 20 win. A quarterfinalist here two years ago, German No.1 Kerber is coming off a comfortable first round victory, as is Lepchenko.

Also on court...
Venus Williams, Agnieszka Radwanska, Samantha Stosur, Dominika Cibulkova and recently crowned Nürnberg champion Eugenie Bouchard all are on the schedule.

Read more details and stats about Wednesday's match-ups in our Match Notes.

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