Live Blog — French Open Women’s Final: Sharapova Bids For Career Slam Against Underdog Errani
by Staff | June 8th, 2012
  • 93 Comments

Maria Sharapova meets surprising Sara Errani Saturday in the French Open finals. The winner will mark the sixth different champion in as many events, and there will be a new French Open champion as both players are appearing in their first Roland Garros final.

In this first-time meeting of 25-year-olds, Maria Sharapova has lost just one set, Errani three including her first set of the tournament to Casey Dellacqua.

“I didn’t think I could do this coming into the tournament. Never. This is just incredible for me,” Errani said Thursday after beating Stosur. “The first round here was difficult, this match was difficult, all the matches have been difficult, and I’m very happy how I’ve played.

“The most important thing for me is I’m just thinking about playing – I’m just playing my game without thinking of what I’m doing. But I’m not finished.”

Seeking a career Slam, Sharapova hasn’t won a major since the 2008 Australian Open, before her shoulder injury. But Errani, who had never beaten a Top 10 player until this event, has wins over three Grand Slam champions this week.

“To be in a Roland Garros final for the first time is a great achievement,” she said. “I’ve always believed and have always worked towards it, but I didn’t know if I was really ever quite ready for it physically. So to be at this stage here for the first time, 25 years old, is really just a great personal achievement.”

Regardless of outcome, Sharapova will rank No. 1 on Monday in new WTA Rankings.

SHARAPOVA NOTES
With her SF win over Kvitova, Sharapova returns to WTA World No.1 for the first time in 4 years; she became the first
Russian player to claimthe No.1 ranking (week of August 25, 2005), and held it for a total of 17 non-consecutive weeks,
most recently in 2008.

Sharapova has now advanced to the final at all 4 Grand Slams; she is 3-3 in her first 6 Grand Slamfinals.

Roland Garros is the only Grand Slam title missing from Sharapova’s resume; she is bidding to become the 10th woman to complete a career Grand Slam (6th in Open Era).

In the Open Era, 8 women have won 3 of the 4 GS titles, including Sharapova. Of those 8 women, 5 have reached the
final of the Grand Slam tournament that they have not won.

Sharapova is trying to complete a career Grand Slam; she would become the 10th player to accomplish this feat (6th in
Open Era).

Sharapova has reached the final at 3 of the last 4 Slams (also R-Up at 2011Wimbledon and 2012 Australian Open; lost
3r at 2011 USOpen).

Sharapova has reached the final in 6 of her 8 WTA events this year (2-3 in finals).

With 26 career singles titles, Sharapova currently ranks 4th among active players behind Venus Williams (43), Serena
Williams (41) and Kim Clijsters (41); additionally, she ranks 19th on the all-time list of title winners.

4 of Sharapova’s last 5 titles have been on clay (2010 Strasbourg, 2011 Rome, 2012 Stuttgart, 2012 Rome; also 2011
Cincinnati – hard court); she haswon a total of 5 clay court titles (also 2008 Amelia Island).

In 2012 Sharapova has lost just once to a player ranked outside the Top 20:No.27 Kerber in QF at Paris [Indoors].

Sharapova is 15-0 on red clay this year winning titles at Rome and Stuttgart and advancing to the final here, a stretch
that includes 4 wins against Top 5 opponents – No.5 Stosur, No.3 Kvitova and No.1 Azarenka (all in Stuttgart) and No.4
Kvitova in SF at RG.

Sharapova is 8-0 in 3-setmatches this year, including her 4r win against Zakopalova; since the start of 2011 Sharapova
is 20-1 in 3 set matches (only loss: Pennetta in 3r of US Open last year).

Sharapova is the first Russian through to the Roland Garros final since Svetlana Kuznetsova defeated countrywoman
Dinara Safina in 2009; she would be the third Russian woman to win the title (alsoMyskina in 2004).

ERRANI NOTES
The winner of 2012 Roland Garros will be the 6th different player to win a Grand Slam title in the last 6 Slams. Sara
Errani is bidding become the 5th straight first time winner at a Slam, joining Li Na (2011 Roland Garros), Petra Kivtova
(2011Wimbledon), Samantha Stosur (2011 USOpen) and VictoriaAzarenka (2012 Australian Open).

Errani is making her Grand Slam final debut; in the Open Era there have been 41 different champions with Roland
Garros producing themost first-time winners (15), followed by Wimbledon (10), Australian Open (8) and US Open (8).

Errani is the lowest seed to reach the final here in the Open Era (also No.21 seed Mary Pierce, R-Up in 2005).

Just twice (all-time) has the women’s singles title at Roland Garros been won by a player not seeded in the Top 10: in
1933 (unseededM.Scriven; tournament had 8 seeds) and 2010 (No.17 seed Schiavone).

Since 1976, no player ranked outside the Top 20 has won the singles at Roland Garros, however there have been 4
players ranked outside of the Top 10 who havewon the title:No.18 S.Barker (1976 as No.1 seed), No.17 V.Ruzici (1978 as
No.2 seed), No.12 Henin (2005 as No.10 seed) and No.17 Schiavone (2010 as No.17 seed).

Errani’s previous best performance at Roland Garros was 2r (2011); she lost in 1r in her first 3 appearances here (2008,
2009, 2010).

Errani made her Grand Slam QF debut at this year’s Australian Open.

In her first 17 Grand Slamappearances, Errani was 15-17 reaching the 3r five times; so far this year she is 10-1 at Grand
Slamsmaking her QF debut at a Slam at Australian Open and reaching her maiden Grand Slamfinal appearance.

In the last 10 years (since 2002), 6 players have won a Grand Slam singles title in their maiden GS final appearance:
Myskina (2004 Roland Garros), Sharapova (2004 Wimbledon), Kuznetsova (2004 US Open), Schiavone (2010 Roland
Garros), Kvitova (2011Wimbledon) and Azarenka (2012 Australian Open).

Errani is the first player since Clijsters in 2003 to reach both the singles and doubles final here (Clijsters was R-up in
singles,won doubles); Mary Pierce was the last player towin both the singles and doubles titles in the same year – 2000
(d. C.Martinez in final;w/Hingis d. Suarez/Ruano Pascual in doubles final).

Entering Roland Garros, Errani was 1-37 vs. Top 15 opponents and 0-28 vs. Top 10; en route to the final she defeated
No.14 Ivanovic (first Top 15 win since 2008 Rome, d. No.15 Szavay), No.10 Kerber (first career Top 10 win) and No.6
Stosur (career-bestwin rankings-wise).

By reaching the final at RG, Errani is projected to make her Top 10 debut at No.10 (win or lose); Errani is the third
Italianwoman to be ranked in the Top 10 (Pennetta, Schiavone).

Errani entered RG as the No. 4 ranked Italian behind Schiavone, Vinci and Pennetta; after Roland Garros, the new Italian
ranking orderwill be Errani, Pennetta, Vinci and Schiavone.

Earlier this year, Errani won 16-straight clay-court matches (5-0 at Acapulco, 5-0 in Barcelona, 5-0 in Budapest, 1-0 in
Madrid before losing to A.Radwanska).

(Notes from WTA)


Also Check Out:
Sharapova v Errani: Let’s Play ‘Will She Choke?’ at French Open
Stosur, Errani into French Semis; Sharapova, Kvitova Up Wednesday
Sharapova v Lisicki the Popcorn Match; Wimbledon Women’s Semi Previews
Sharapova Nears No. 1 And Career Slam, Can Kvitova Stop Her In French Open Semifinals?
Azarenka Clinches No. 1 Ranking, Meets Sharapova In WTA Championships SFs; Will The Winner Meet Serena Sunday?

Don't miss any tennis action, stay connected with Tennis-X

Get Tennis-X news FREE in your inbox every day

93 Comments for Live Blog — French Open Women’s Final: Sharapova Bids For Career Slam Against Underdog Errani

Gannu Says:

my one favorite and god is on a declining phase…at;east happy that the women’s favorite is doing well…come on masha…do well..happy for u


Mark Says:

Come on Errani. Pocket Rocket!!


Kimmi Says:

c’mon underdog but i don’t think with that serve she can win it today. sharapova will win this match with first strike tennis. too powerful for errani methinks.

carter slam feel good!!


Kimmi Says:

“career”.. don’t know where carter came from. must be auto correct.


Kimberly Says:

Here we go, triple hot seat for me
Sharapova
Miami Heat
Rafa

Will any of them win? All of them? 1 for 3? 2 for 3?


Kimberly Says:

OK they said it, she needs a strong serving day.


Kimberly Says:

the womens final about to start and i am all alone here?


Kimberly Says:

Although unfortuantely I have a “performance training” session at 10 so I can’t stay too long.


Kimberly Says:

Kaiser as promised, went diving to avoid this final.


Kimmi Says:

already great serving from sharapova


X-Staff Says:

Onw hiccup double in first service game but Maria powers through a couple serves and finishes with an ace for 1-0


Kimberly Says:

This could go fast


X-Staff Says:

Errani a nervous service game and Sharapova winners make it 2-0 for the Russian; Maria serves it to 3-0. So far going as planned, to much Maria power.


X-Staff Says:

Sharapova still pounding Errani serves for winners, AND outlasting Errani in rallies, not making errors. Maria going for winners + not making errors = will be a short day.
Serving 30-40, Errani finally wins a baseline rally to bring it to deauce.


X-Staff Says:

Masha mashes another Errani serve for a winner, pounds a winner to end a rally for 4-0 lead for the Russian.


X-Staff Says:

Maria doubles to begin the game; Errani hits her first winner for 0-30.


X-Staff Says:

Sharapova doubles AGAIN, here come the yips, 0-40. Errani gets the almost-obese chair umpire to come out and check a mark, but Errani wins the next point to finally get on the board, 4-1 Sharapova.


Daniel Says:

MaShan iniviting Errani to join the match. Even so, no qay Maria is losing this match.


X-Staff Says:

Errani mixes up some nice net points and moving Maria around the baseline, crowd getting behind her. 40-0 lead but struggles in some long rallies, 30-40. Maria misfires on a groundstroke, Errani holds for 2-4.


X-Staff Says:

Maria’s all-out confidence she came out with starting to wane, but still pounding winners. Masha hits winners to end first three points, Errani not mixing up looks enough. Sharapova holds for 5-2.


X-Staff Says:

Errnai needs to come out for this second set with a different game plan, too many points she ends up just slugging it out and losing.

Sharapova wins another baseline battle, Errani 15-30.


Kimberly Says:

Is x staff here to make up for the lack of WTA posters


X-Staff Says:

Errani fight off two set points for deuce.
Errani throws in some slice and wins a long baseline rally for ad-in. Wins another long rally to close out the game, 5-3 Sharapova.


X-Staff Says:

X-Staff just bored.


X-Staff Says:

Maria starting to serve a little wildly, doubles for 15-all. Will she unravel serving out the set?


Kimberly Says:

Set point number 3


Kimmi Says:

X-staff, great commentary. Are you working for tennis-x?


X-Staff Says:

Errani gives away a point on return but then wins a long rally for 30-all. Maria pounds a winner for 40-30, then drills a backhand down the line to close out the set. One set for Sharapova, one set away from career Slam.


Kimmi Says:

set maria. errani seem to be getting in this match.


X-Staff Says:

Yes, actual staffer. Glad to have the two K’s with us.
What does Errani need to do differently this second set? She’s not showing Sharapova anything much different than a ball machine would.


Wog boy Says:

Davaj Maria, davaj! One more set.

Errani is tough cookie!


X-Staff Says:

Also of note, next February the U.S. will open against Italy in Fed Cup, in Italy on clay. Errani and Schiavone vs. Serena and Venus?

Errani starts with two backhand errors. Notice Errani has a little Rafa follow through on the forehand? Maria hits a winner for 0-40. Maria breaks, serving 1-0, this could be quick.


Kimmi Says:

x-staff, she needs to move maria a little. so far maria is set up easy to hit those big ground strokes. it is easier said than done. not a good start in the second set already.


X-Staff Says:

Errani is a tough cookie but Masha is the cookie monster.


X-Staff Says:

Credit to Maria who is moving and hitting so well.
Errani finally comes to the net again to win with, as Patrick McEnroe would say, THE DROPPER! 15-all.


Kimmi Says:

maria is oozing confidence right now. she is not missing. errani has to earn it.

nice volley there.


Wog boy Says:

X-Staff,

:-)


Kimberly Says:

Off to my brutal performance class hope Maria wins


Kimmi Says:

Notice errani is trying to change something. she is going for broke on those returns but missing so far.


X-Staff Says:

Errani hands Maria a point off the return of serve, 30-15 Maria. Blasts a service winner for 40-15. Errani comes to net after long point, winning with a DEFT drop volley, need more of that! Maria serving 40-30 faults, then nets forehand, deuce!


Kimmi Says:

another volley after those big groundies from both. errani is impressing. I am starting to enjoy now.


X-Staff Says:

Masha mashes an ace, then pounds a backhand winner for 2-0. Too much complacent baseline play from Errani, which will always end with a Maria winner.


Kimmi Says:

ugh! i was hoping errani breaks back there but not to be. c’mon hold here now.


Kimmi Says:

nice cat and mouse there. errani gets the point. nice effort.


Kimmi Says:

oh no! DF, she needs to HOLD here.


Kimmi Says:

40-0 errani to doece. not good.


X-Staff Says:

Errani goes 30-love lead, then wins a long crowd-pleaser, lobbing Maria then ending point of second overhead. 40-0.
Maria pounds a forehand winner, then Errani hits two terrible serves to double, 40-30.
Errani backhand unforced error for deuce, unraveling.
Maria missed a backhand down the line into the net, ad Errani, who finally closes it out when Maria hands it to her with a return long.
Sharapova serving 6-3, 2-1.


Kimmi Says:

HOLD! great game errani helped by two maria errors. now try to break her.


X-Staff Says:

That was a nice Stella Artois commercial, hope you saw that locally, makes us thursty.

Maria serving, loses the first point, then CRUSHES a backhand for 15-all. Big babe tennis, as Mary Carillo would say. Maria pounds an ace, her 4th, for 30-15. Service winner for 40-15, just too much firepower from Maria.

Sharapova finally makes a groundstroke error, serving 40-30, then deuce after a Sharapova forehand error. Opportunity…


Kimmi Says:

big serving by maria in this game.


X-Staff Says:

Shot spots shows Sharapova ace called out, then Errani wins the point to set up a break point. Sharapova then grinds out a rally for deuce, Errani doing LOTS of running.

Errani drop shot but not a good one, Maria hustles up to slap a forehand winner, ad-in.

Errani chop forehand catches the tape, game Maria, 3-1.


Kimmi Says:

danger time for errani here 0-30


X-Staff Says:

Sharapova still teeing off on the Errani serve, the Italian quicly goes down 0-30 before slapping a forehand winner for 15-30. Must-win game for the Italian.

Sharapova hits long, 30-all. Free points are good.

Sharapova long again off the backhand, game point Errani. Getting gifts. Until Maria just CRUSHES an Errani serve for a winner, deuce.

Maria goes for the return winner again but misses crosscourt, then ends a rally with a forehand winner down the line. This game, and match, is totally up to Maria.

Masha pops another groundstroke winner, then Errani wins a long rally when Maria barely misses crosscourt. Deuce.

Maria misses a going for a return, then pounds a forehand winner, Deuce. Too many Errani short balls.

Maria pounds a forehand service return winner, but after a long rally sails a forehand long for ANOTHER deuce. Deuce #5.

Errani trying to match Sharapova power in rallies, big mistake and Masha overpowers her for break point #3. Errani then come in with a deft volley, but Sharapova makes a great get to break, finally, for 4-1.


Wog boy Says:

Second break, this should seal the deal.


Kimmi Says:

wow! maria footwork is good. what a get on that volley frm errani.

i think that is it.


X-Staff Says:

Maria in confidence mode now, walking around with head high, stoic, “Yeah I’m bad — like Michael Jackson bad” look on her face.

30-0, then Errani scraps out a point.


X-Staff Says:

Maria doubles for 30-all, too few and far beteen to help Errani, who on the next point goes into Maria Mode and pounds a service return winner, break point. Then gets the break!

Serving 2-4.


Kimmi Says:

he he he he didn’t see that break coming.


Wog boy Says:

It is better if I keep quiet, I jinxed Maria.


X-Staff Says:

Errani quickly 0-30, then 0-40 after forced venture to the net. This break is going back to Maria.

15-40 after wild SHarapova return.
Maria pounds a backhand winner for the break and 5-2.


X-Staff Says:

Get the trophy ready.


X-Staff Says:

Errani ready to scrap, wins first point after big return.
15-all after Errani sails backhand wide, can’t take advantage of some good groundstroke looks.
Errani again forces a net rush, volley long, Sharapova serving 30-15, crowd sensing it, but Errani brings it to 30-all after drop shot then volley winner.


X-Staff Says:

Errani dominates point until Sharapova hits a stab groundstoke for a winner, MATCH POINT.

Maria faults, then forehand BARELY long, deuce…


jane Says:

From match point to break point.


jane Says:

Fab serve to bring up MP 2.


X-Staff Says:

Maria fault, then Errani ends a long point with a sweet forehand drop volley almost from the baseline, BREAK POINT.

Maria RIPS a backhand winner crosscourt off a deep ball, impressive, back to deuce.

Maria ace wide sets up MATCH POINT again.

Errani DOES IT AGAIN, long rally ended by drop volley in the exact same spot. Back to deuce!


jane Says:

Third time is a charm!!!! Maria wins on her 3rd. MP. Career slam, woot!


X-Staff Says:

Another Maria ace, MATCH POINT #3.

Maria fault, then long rally, then Errani dropshot miss AND IT’S OVER

!!


Kimmi Says:

congrats maria. so happy!!


Green900 Says:

Sharapova completed the Career slam , now I’m waiting for djokovic to on Sunday :p


X-Staff Says:

A smiling, teary-eyed Sharapova waves to the crowd, the 2012 French Open champion. The Russian has now won all four Slams during her career, and she cements the new No. 1 ranking she will again assume come Monday.

Congrats to Maria Sharapova.


gannu Says:

V happy for maria…for thw first time I felt so happy for someone else apart from feddy bear…well done masha…u deserved it for all the perseverance, determination that u had…a worthy no 1 in women’s tennis


jane Says:

Errani is sad; at least she won the doubles title yesterday.


Wog boy Says:

Monica Seles looks nice.


Kimmi Says:

is it the weekend of career slam???? lets hope so.


jane Says:

Nice to see Monica Seles; she does look nice. What a FO for Errani. Yay Maria!!


X-Staff Says:

Funny trophy presentation moment as the announcer mistakenly calls Sharapova the runner-up and Errani raises her arms in triumph, both laughing.


jane Says:

Yay that was cute. Maria having a tough holding back tears during the anthem.


Kimmi Says:

she doesnt feel russian sharapova. more american. good to see her keeping her nationality.


Kimmi Says:

some french! niiiiiice


Kimmi Says:

humble maria???


jane Says:

Good ceremony, not too long. Not a bunch of speeches from sponsors, directors, etc.


Kimmi Says:

no.1 and 2 for mens doubles. should be good!


Wog boy Says:

Commentator said Maria is most followed female sport person in the world on FB, more than seven million people..didn’t know that.


Wog boy Says:

jane,

Are you watching Belgrade born Canadian playing doubles:)


jane Says:

Don’t know Wog Boy. I am tired. Have to get up very early on a Saturday to see these matches. Zzzzz.

So do you think Nole will get a set tomorrow?


Paradox Says:

Is it the weekend of champions who wins the 4th grandslam final they are involved in after ending as runner up in the 3 grandslam finals in a row.Let us hope so.


Wog boy Says:

Not saying anything jane, hoping he is going to give his best shot and we will see:)
Nestor is coming out now but it to late/early for me to watch, 1:30am, I want to have good rest for tomorrow night, off to bed.
Really happy for Maria, she never gave up through all injuries and other problems etc.


jane Says:

Wog Boy, good attitude. I am happy for Maria too. See you later.


Kimberly Says:

Congrats to Maria…seems so long ago she double faulted away an entire set to Melanie Oudin at the USO. Solid solid play.


skeezer Says:

^ you’re 1-3 so far ;) 2 others coming up.


Humble Rafa Says:

Is x staff here to make up for the lack of WTA posters

Most of us non-hypocrites are for equal pay for women players. But everyone knows the WTA is poor business compared to the ATP. More skin doesn’t make up for less money.

Top story: Djokovic Dominates; Nadal, Federer In Action Wednesday At Monte Carlo
  • Recent Comments
Rankings
ATP - Apr 14 WTA - Apr 14
1 Rafael Nadal1 Serena Williams
2 Novak Djokovic2 Na Li
3 Stanislas Wawrinka3 Agnieszka Radwanska
4 Roger Federer4 Victoria Azarenka
5 Tomas Berdych5 Simona Halep
6 David Ferrer6 Petra Kvitova
7 Juan Martin Del Potro7 Angelique Kerber
8 Andy Murray8 Jelena Jankovic
9 Richard Gasquet9 Maria Sharapova
10 Milos Raonic10 Dominika Cibulkova
More: Tennis T-Shirts | Tennis Twitter | Live Tennis Scores | Headlines

Copyright © 2003-2013 Tennis-X.com. All rights reserved.
This website is an independently operated source of news and information and is not affiliated with any professional organizations.