Serbia's Novak Djokovic argues with the chair umpire during the first round match of the French Open tennis tournament against Aleksandar Kovacevic of the U.S. at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, Monday, May 29, 2023. (AP Photo/Jean-Francois Badias)
PARIS — No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz and No. 3 Novak Djokovic are back on court on Day 4 of the French Open and they hope to avoid the sort of surprise that took No. 2 seed Daniil Medvedev out of the bracket.
On Tuesday, Medvedev was upset by a guy who is ranked 172nd and was playing just the second main-draw Grand Slam match of his career.
On Wednesday, Alcaraz meets Taro Daniel in a second-round match in Court Philippe Chatrier, where Djokovic will follow by facing Martin Fucsovics in the night session.
Two of the top three women in the field are also scheduled for second-round action: No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka against Iryna Shymanovich, and No. 3 Jessica Pegula against Camila Giorgi.
WHEN DO THEY PLAY WEDNESDAY?
Play begins at 11 a.m. local time in Paris, which is 5 a.m. EDT, everywhere except the main stadium, Court Philippe Chatrier, where the first match — Pegula vs. Giorgi — is scheduled to start at 11:45 a.m. local time, which is 5:45 a.m. EDT. No. 5 Caroline Garcia meets Anna Blinkova next in Chartier, followed by Alcaraz-Daniel, which could begin around 4 p.m. local time, which is 11 a.m. EDT. Djokovic-Fucsovics is scheduled to start at 8:15 p.m., local time which is 2:15 p.m. EDT — and will mean that the first three night sessions this year were all men’s matches.
WHAT HAPPENED TUESDAY?
Medvedev was knocked out by Brazilian qualifier Thiago Seybolt Wild 7-6 (5), 6-7 (8), 2-6, 6-3, 6-4, then reminded anyone who would listen how much he dislikes playing on red clay. Barbora Krejcikova, who won singles and doubles titles at Roland Garros in 2021, lost in the first round of singles for the second consecutive year. She was defeated by Lesia Tsurenko 6-2, 6-4. Top women’s seeds advancing included defending champion Iga Swiatek, 2022 runner-up Coco Gauff, reigning Wimbledon winner Elena Rybakina and two-time major finalist Ons Jabeur. No. 4 Casper Ruud (the runner-up to Rafael Nadal a year ago), No. 6 Holger Rune, No. 9 Taylor Fritz and No. 16 Tommy Paul were among the men’s winners.
‘JIMMY BUCKETS’ CALLED IT
Coco Gauff says Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler predicted his team would reach the NBA Finals before a playoff berth was even assured. Read the tale here.
GET CAUGHT UP
What you need to know about the year’s second Grand Slam tennis tournament:
– Nadal is not here
– Djokovic can break a tie with Nadal by winning Slam No. 23
– Swiatek, Sabalenka, Elena Rybakina split past four major titles
– Alcaraz, Djokovic drawn to meet in the semifinals
– First-round opponents for Alcaraz, Djokovic do not find them ‘otherworldly’
– 3 Chinese men in main draw at Roland Garros
– Elina Svitolina wins her first Grand Slam match as a mother
– Facts and figures about the French Open, including a look back at 2022
TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE
Try your hand at the AP’s latest tennis quiz here.
With third choice Medvedev gone, Alcaraz — at plus-135 — and Djokovic — at plus-200 — remain the heavy favorites for the French Open men’s championship, according to FanDuel Sportsbook, while No. 6 Rune and No. 8 Jannik Sinner are joint third choices at plus-900. Swiatek remains a significant favorite for the women’s championship at Roland Garros, listed at minus-125. Pegula is listed at minus-315 to eliminate Giorgi.
THE NUMBER TO KNOW
2000 — That was the last time a No. 2 seed lost in the first round of the French Open men’s bracket, when Pete Sampras was eliminated by Mark Philippoussis.
THE QUOTE TO KNOW
“I haven’t had many matches under my belt coming into this tournament, so my goal was just to do my best, give 100% and whatever happens, happens. I did bit more than that and I’m very proud of myself.” — 2019 U.S. Open champion Bianca Andreescu, after coming back to beat former No. 1 Victoria Azarenka 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.
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