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Swiatek pleads for peace from the fans after edging past Osaka at French Open

Defending champion Iga Swiatek called on rowdy fans to stay quiet and behave themselves during rallies just minutes clinching a three-hour victory over Naomi Osaka on Wednesday night n the second round of the French Open in Paris.

In an on-court interview with former player Alex Corretja, Swiatek said as she looked at the crowds on Court Philippe Chatrier: "You know I love you guys and I love playing here but please don't call out."

Choking back tears of exhaustion after her ordeal in which she saved a match point against the former world number one, she added: "The players are trying to focus and perform at our best to please you. You've paid money and we're playing for money and a point here and there can make all the difference."

Swiatek came into the 2024 tournament as the overwhelming favourite following back-to-back titles on the clay courts in Madrid and Rome to emulate the feats of Serena Williams in 2013.

Osaka idolised the American and at moments during the encounter, there were fragrances of vintage Serena: brutal first serves followed by clean winners or unexpected bludgeons from the deep court.

After coming back from a break down in the opening set to level at 4-4, Osaka's backhand went absent during the tiebreak – it lost her five points as Swiatek waltzed the shoot-out seven points to one.

But Osaka returned from a toilet break to batter Swiatek. She won the second set 6-1 and continued her roll to open up a 3-0 lead in the decider

Swiatek warded off the danger to trail 2-4.


Read more on RFI English

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