2021 French Open: What to Watch on Sunday

How to watch: 5 a.m. to midday Eastern time on the Tennis Channel, midday to 2 p.m. on NBC and a pair of p.m. to 6 p.m. on Peacock; streaming on the Tennis Channel+ and Peacock apps.

Both singles attracts on the French Open have narrowed to simply 16 opponents from 256 in the midst of the previous week. There are a number of inspiring debutantes making their first look within the second week of a Grand Slam event, comparable to Tamara Zidanšek and Federico Delbonis. Although it’s attainable for them to push on, there are various former champions standing of their method.

Here are some matches to hold a watch on.

Because of the variety of matches biking by means of courts, the instances for particular person matchups are estimates and will fluctuate primarily based on when earlier play is accomplished. All instances are Eastern.

Court Suzanne-Lenglen | 9 a.m.

Daniil Medvedev vs. Cristian Garin

Before this 12 months, Daniil Medvedev, the second seed, has by no means been previous the primary spherical at Roland Garros. Even this 12 months, his clay court docket season had not gone nicely, with the 25-year-old Russian exclaiming in the midst of a match that he didn’t “want to play here on this surface.” Now, into the spherical of 16, Medvedev is beginning to see outcomes by leaning on his pure skills and never turning into discouraged by the slights that the clay courts throw his method.

Cristian Garin, the 22nd seed, will present a a lot sterner problem for the Russian. Garin is a clay court docket specialist, profitable the Junior French Open in 2013. All 5 of his ATP titles have come at clay court docket occasions over the previous couple of years. This can be his first spherical of 16 look at a serious event, and though he has dropped units in every of his first three rounds, they’ve been quintessential “dirt rat” matches, with lengthy grueling factors that performed into Garin’s total technique. If he can push factors in that course all through the match in opposition to Medvedev, Garin will definitely have an opportunity to make his first Grand Slam quarterfinal.

Victoria Azarenka hitting a backhand throughout her third spherical match.Credit…Yoan Valat/EPA, through Shutterstock

Court PhiliPpe-Chatrier | 7 a.m.

Victoria Azarenka vs. Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova

Victoria Azarenka, the 15th seed, missed six Grand Slam occasions between 2016 and 2018 due to numerous private points, and she or he spent a number of years making an attempt to discover the identical skills that led her to two Grand Slam titles earlier in her profession. After a finals look on the U.S. Open in 2020, it appeared that she was ready to contend as soon as once more. But, with early exits on the 2020 French Open and 2021 Australian Open, it wasn’t clear whether or not or not Azarenka’s efficiency in Flushing Meadows was a fluke. Seemingly not; Azarenka has not dropped a set at Roland Garros on her method to the spherical of 16, and she or he is enjoying a few of her greatest tennis of the 12 months as she focuses on the second week of play.

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the 31st seed, upset Aryna Sabalenka, the best rated participant left by means of the third spherical, on Friday in three units. Pavlyuchenkova, who received two Junior Grand Slam event titles, has by no means been previous the quarterfinals of a serious occasion on the WTA Tour in a profession marked by inconsistent performances. After a run to the semifinals on the Madrid Open in May, Pavlyuchenkova will really feel that she is in good kind, and that she is able to lastly making that large push. While her flat baseline pictures usually are not nicely suited to clay, if she will be able to energy by means of and transfer Azarenka across the court docket, there are many alternatives for an upset.

Court Suzanne-Lenglen | Noon

Alejandro Davidovich Fokina vs. Federico Delbonis

On Friday, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina upset the 15th seed, Casper Ruud, in a grueling five-set match that grew extra intense with every passing minute. Even after four-and-a-half hours of play, Fokina was nonetheless setting up aggressive and exact factors as he strove to attain his first Grand Slam spherical of 16. Now, after two five-set matches in consecutive rounds, Fokina’s endurance can be put to the take a look at as he seems to be to higher Federico Delbonis.

Delbonis, ranked No. 51, upset the 27th seed, Fabio Fognini, in straight units on Friday. The 30-year-old Argentine has by no means been previous the second spherical of the French Open, however all 4 of his profession ATP finals have been on clay. Delbonis doesn’t match the archetypal profile of a clay court docket specialist; he’s 6-foot-Four, with a two-handed backhand that he can hit down and flatten out with ease. Delbonis will look to use his highly effective pictures and expertise to run Fokina ragged and push by means of to the quarterfinals.

Serena Williams in motion throughout her third spherical match on Friday.Credit…Benoit Tessier/Reuters

Court PhilipPe-Chatrier | Noon

Serena Williams vs Elena Rybakina

There had been issues all through the clay court docket swing that Serena Williams was not ready for the French Open. Williams, the seventh seed, has slowly performed herself into kind over the previous week, delivering a sensational straight-set efficiency in opposition to her fellow American, Danielle Collins, on Friday. Now Williams is the one prime 10 participant remaining in her half of the draw, with a a lot clearer path to the ultimate subsequent week. However, the WTA Tour has a deep bench of gifted children trying to make champions of the previous fade away.

Elena Rybakina, the 21st seed, has not dropped a set to date at this 12 months’s French Open. The 21-year-old reached 5 WTA Tour finals in 2020, a tour greatest for the 12 months, however she has not been in a position to recreate that success to date in 2021. With a profession greatest run to the spherical of 16, she has made up for it, and now will want to summon her appreciable energy on each wings to try to unseat Williams and attain her first main quarterfinal.

Here are a number of extra matches to hold a watch on.

Tamara Zidanšek vs. Sorana Cîrstea; Court Suzanne-Lenglen, 5 a.m.

Paula Badosa vs. Marketa Vondroušová; Court Suzanne-Lenglen, 7 a.m.

Elise Mertens/Hsieh Su-wei vs. Iga Swiatek/Bethanie Mattek-Sands; Court Simonne-Mathieu, 7 a.m.

Stefanos Tsitsipas vs. Pablo Correno Busta; Court Philippe-Chatrier, 9 a.m.

Alexander Zverev vs. Kei Nishikori; Court Philippe-Chatrier, three p.m.