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French Open

A look at Day 6 of the French Open and a look ahead to today's competition (world rankings in parentheses)

May 31, 2008|Chuck Culpepper

WHO WON

Rafael Nadal, Spain (2) -- against 26th-ranked Jarkko Nieminen, Finland, 6-1, 6-3, 6-1. Rounds: three. Sets: nine. Games yielded: 19. Average per set: 2.1. Mode: hurried. Chance of losing here: slight.

Maria Sharapova, Russia (1) -- against American Bethanie Mattek, 6-2, 3-6, 6-2. Last month in Charleston, S.C., Sharapova beat the 106th-ranked Mattek 6-0, 6-0, after which, Mattek said, "I remember I called one of my friends crying about that." So call this a victory for both.

Ana Ivanovic, Serbia (2) -- against 34th-ranked Caroline Wozniacki, Denmark, 6-4, 6-1. While Sharapova claws through loudly and the Williams sisters always attract attention, the finalist from 2007 quietly persists.

Frenchmen in general -- The hosts wound up with six men in the third round, and they're already 3-0 in getting to the fourth round with Paul-Henri Mathieu, Jeremy Chardy and Michael Llodra.

WHO LOST

Serena Williams (5) -- against 24th-ranked Katarina Srebotnik of Slovenia, 6-4, 6-4. She gave Srebotnik her second advance to the fourth round in 36 Grand Slams. Asked why she converted one of eight break-point chances while Srebotnik made three of four, Williams said, "I don't know. Thanks."

Venus Williams (7) -- against 30th-ranked Flavia Pennetta, Italy, 7-5, 6-3. She actually played quite well but exited in the third round here for the second straight year.

Wayne Odesnik (106) -- against third-ranked Novak Djokovic, 7-5, 6-4, 6-2. Sure, it figured to end that way against the outrageously talented Australian Open champion, but the Florida left-hander showed some serious pluck.

TODAY'S MATCHES TO WATCH

Roger Federer, Switzerland (1) vs. Mario Ancic, Croatia (46). Ancic remains the last person to defeat Federer at Wimbledon, that in 2002.

Maria Sharapova, Russia (1) vs. Karin Knapp, Italy (38). The Italians placed three women in the round of 32, and have a chance to go further if Sharapova continues recent spottiness.

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