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Coco Gauff headed to third straight French Open quarterfinals

Coco Gauff put aside a skinned knee and a bad stretch in the first set to reach the French Open quarterfinals for the third consecutive year with a 7-5, 6-2 triumph over Anna Karolina Schmiedlova on Monday.

Gauff grabbed a 5-2 lead versus Schmiedlova, but then things got more interesting. Gauff was broken while serving for the set at 5-2 and again at 5-4.

She helped the 100th-ranked Schmiedlova — who had never been past the third round at a major tournament — with a double fault, then dumped a forehand into the net to end a 21-stroke exchange, making it 5-all. In the next game, Gauff stumbled on the slippery clay in sun-splashed but windy Court Philippe-Chatrier, scraping her right knee.

After she gathered herself to claim that set, Gauff was visited by a trainer, who placed a white bandage just below her knee. The edges of that patch began to curl up as Gauff played, and she removed it soon after.

Next for Gauff will be a rematch versus No. 1 Iga Swiatek, who defeated the 19-year-old American in last year’s final at Roland Garros and is 6-0 overall in their head-to-head meetings.

Swiatek advanced Monday when her opponent, Lesia Tsurenko, stopped playing because of trouble breathing while trailing 5-1 in the first set.

Jabeur was the runner-up at Wimbledon and the US Open last season, but she exited the French Open in the first round and it was the only major at which she hadn’t been to the quarterfinals until now. She got there by defeating Bernarda Pera, an American ranked 36th, 6-3, 6-1.

Jabeur managed to collect all eight of Pera’s service games, helped by taking 15 of 16 second-serve points. Pera didn’t help herself, either, by making 33 unforced errors to just 13 winners.

“I was expecting her to play better,” Jabeur said.

Haddad Maia reached her first Slam quarterfinal by outlasting 132nd-ranked Sara Sorribes Tormo 6-7 (3), 6-3, 7-5 in a fourth-rounder that lasted 3 hours, 51 minutes.

Before this trip to Paris, Haddad Maia never had been past the second round at Roland Garros or any other Grand Slam tournament.

“I think tennis is not a 100-meter race. It’s a marathon,” Haddad Maia said. “Especially my matches.”

Steve Carr

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