Roland Garros Day 3: Links Roundup with Nadal, Sock, Gulbis, Stephens and more

Roland Garros Roundup takes you through the Slam’s hot stories of the day, both on and off the court.

Tommy Haas during his match against Guillaume Rufin

Shot of the day: A stormy view of Suzanne Lenglen court where Tommy Haas took out  Guillaume Rufin in straight sets “while sick and on antibiotics” as tweeted by his proud wife, Sara Foster.

Rain, Rain, Go Away: Day 3 of the French Open commenced with an unfortunate 2.5 hour rain delay. The lengthy delay not only pushed back the third day of opening round matches, but it puts players such as Victoria Azarenka and Petra Kvitova at disadvantage because as the Associated Press reports, “They won’t begin until at least Wednesday, three days after some players were already into the second round.”

Philipp Kohlschreiber tells all:  In this Road to Roland Garros feature, German Philipp Kohlschreiber discusses the prospect of serving up a triple bagel, his favorite movie and actor, his goals when entering a match, and even dresses up in a Viking costume.

Nick Kyrgios poised and patient:  In an interview following his first round victory over Radek Stepanek, Australian Nick Kyrgios said “playing juniors has been a major step in being so confident” but he realizes thinking too far ahead can spell trouble.  His coach, Simon Rea, echoed this sentiment stating, “I don’t view this as a skyrocketing path to the top 50 for Nick (but rather) an important step on his journey.”

Sloane Stephens and Rafael Nadal demonstrate erratic nature of tennis:  As Jon Wertheim of Sports Illustrated describes, Rafael Nadal and Sloane Stephens have had markedly different results since the Australian Open but their first round matches would indicate otherwise. 

Given his form coming in, he figured to make quick work of Daniel Brands, a German journeyman of little regard” but as any tennis player and fan can attest to and as Wertheim articulates “there are no sure bets in tennis.” Nadal fans held their breath for nearly two sets before the Spaniard ran away with the win in four.

“Since Australia, it’s been tough sledding for Stephens … (but) on Monday, with efficiency and deceptively hard hitting, she pushed aside Karin Knapp 6-2 7-5.”

Jack Sock playing in the memory of friends: In a picture American Jack Sock posted via twitter, he indicated he is “not only playing for myself but for two friends that passed away in the last couple of weeks.” Sock penned in the initials of his two friends on the shoes he would presumably be wearing during the French Open: Brian Boyd from his high school days and Alex Rovello from their years playing in the juniors, who was a University of Oregon tennis player and died in a tragic accident recently. Today, Sock recorded his first ever victory at the French Open over Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain in straight sets.

Ernests Gulbis discusses future, on court etiquette: In an article written by Reem Abulleil of Sport 360, Gulbis stated that recognizes the lack of pressure he will deal with for the rest of the season. He said, “I have no points to defend until the end of the year.  I think ranking wise I’m probably in the best position of anybody.  Step by step we’re going to get somewhere.”  Although Gulbis may display animosity toward his opponents on and off the court he told Sport 360 “I can sometimes be disrespectful in some press conferences but when I play, I really want to respect the opponent.”

Bernard Tomic injured, forced to retired, comments on father: Bernard Tomic was forced to retire in his opening round match of the French Open against Victor Hanescu claiming that he felt his “leg sort of tear and didn’t know what it was.” Not wanting to talk about the incident in Madrid with his father, Tomic only said “my dad’s still my coach, and he’ll always be, because, you know, I grew up with him and he knows me better than everyone else.” Tomic said in regards to injury that he is “lucky it’s not huge” and that he should be ready in time for Wimbledon.

19-year-old Lucas Pouille scores massive win: Lucas Pouille, a 19-year-old French wildcard, won his first ever tour level match, defeating American wildcard Alex Kuznestov in three convincing sets.  In an article (translated) written by Lucas Apulia of francetv, Pouille stated, “It was fabulous, I had an incredible time. When I finished the game, I was really happy.”