Second-seeded Karolina Pliskova‘s defeat to Jelena Ostapenko in the second round of the French Open 2020 will go down as an upset in the record books. However, it is not that much of a surprise as among the two players, Ostapenko is the one with a Grand Slam title to her name.
Former world number Lindsay Davenport had the same assessment of Ostapenko’s win on Thursday. “Ostapenko beating Pliskova, not actually a huge surprise,” Davenport said soon after the match.
It is still not easy to concede just six games against the world number three player. That too in conditions not quite conducive for free-flowing tennis, which Ostapenko displayed. Davenport spoke highly of Ostapenko’s gameplay against Pliskova.
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“It was one of the best matches Ostapenko has actually played in a couple of years. She was dictating play. She was moving around the court really well,” Davenport said further.
A three-time Grand Slam singles winner, Davenport also highlighted improvements in Ostapenko’s game and fitness since the WTA Tour’s restart after the lockdown.
“One thing to notice about Ostapenko is she looks in better shape after this shutdown. She looks to be a little bit more focused on the court,” Davenport said, adding that sometimes temper gets the better of the Latvian player.
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The 1998 French Open semi-finalist, Davenport then explained the difference between the two players on Thursday. The American former player believes that the other players in the draw are also aware of Ostapenko’s quality.
“She looked so good today against Pliskova. She looked like she knew what she wanted to do, how she wanted to play the points,” Davenport expressed. “So an upset in the rankings, but not a huge surprise to the other players in the draw,” she continued.
However, Ostapenko was just the better player on the day. The 2017 French Open champion scored 27 winners to 19 unforced errors on the day. Meanwhile, Pliskova could manage just nine winners on the day.