2016 champion Garbiñe Muguruza was ruthless in dismissing 2010 finalist Samantha Stosur for the loss of just two games in the third round of Roland Garros.
Alex Macpherson
June 2, 2018

PARIS, France - No.3 seed Garbiñe Muguruza has bulldozed her way into the second week of Roland Garros, defeating a second former Slam champion in three matches in Samantha Stosur by an emphatic 6-0, 6-2 scoreline.

The 62-minute victory means that the 2016 champion has reached the second week in Paris for a fifth consecutive year, and is a repeat of their semifinal result in the year of that title run - a match Muguruza won 6-2, 6-4.

Overall, she has now won her last three matches against the Australian to extend her head-to-head lead to 3-1 - and today's triumph was the most one-sided yet.

"I'm pleased with my performance today. I think it was never easy match against Grand Slam champion," Muguruza said after the match.

"She reached a final here. I'm pleased because I felt in control in the match. I like playing in Philippe Chatrier, because it's the court which is probably the most important one in my career. I played well. I knew how to play facing her tactics, because she has a mix and it was important to control from the first ball."

Over the course of a 24-minute opening set, the 24-year-old would limit Stosur to only 10 points. The World No.90 was unable to reach game point even once as Muguruza attacked with a barrage of heavy groundstrokes that elicited numerous errors and shanks: Stosur would leak nine unforced errors, while the Spaniard kept her own ground game tight with just three.

The result was an emphatic 6-0 set - the first bagel inflicted on Stosur since the 2017 Australian Open, when Heather Watson had defeated her 6-3, 3-6, 6-0 in the first round.

As the Wimbledon champion began to expand her repertoire with clever wrongfooting winners and efficient net play to break Stosur for the fourth time at the start of the second set, the former World No.4 might have feared the dreaded double bagel - a scoreline she had suffered only once before, in the second round of Miami in 2006 courtesy of Amélie Mauresmo.

However, playing the third round in Paris for the 10th consecutive year, the 34-year-old finally got a foothold in the match with an aggressive hold in the third game of the second set, finishing with a powerful drive volley.

Raising her level, Stosur fired a backhand pass and forehand down the line to carve out her first break points of the match in the next game - to which Muguruza responded by double faulting.

But the Wimbledon champion wasn't about to let her hard-won momentum slip. Confident net play saw her regain the break lead immediately, and there would be no further lapses on her own serve; indeed, a crucial statistic over the course of the match would be the 76% of points Muguruza won behind her first serve.

Stosur's unforced error count continued to rise to a total of 20, costing her another break in the seventh game; and Muguruza sailed into the fourth round in style, closing the match out with her first ace of the day.

The Spaniard now advances to the second week in Paris for the fifth time in six career main draw appearances, and she will face Lesia Tsurenko for a spot in the last eight.

The Ukrainian No.2 defeated No.19 seed Magdalena Rybarikova, 6-2, 6-4 to reach the round of 16 in Paris for the first time.

"I believe I can hold a trophy not only here; I believe I can do it in every tournament I play. Of course here it's so many matches. It's a very long tournament," Muguruza added.

"Working hard, playing tough matches, and knowing that eventually the good ones were going to come, trying to believe that. Tomorrow I have a day off. I'm going to train. I'm going to train thinking about my next opponent."