Who is this Richard Gasquet and what’s he done with the old one?
The French wunderkind who never panned out as an adult bloomed late — specifically on Sunday at Roland Garros — advancing to his first French Open quarterfinals in 13 tries after a 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2 upset over No. 5 seed Kei Nishikori.
Gasquet said he benefited from a rain delay in the first set and subsequent change of tactics and mindset.
“I think it was a very important time for me to stop because I was playing not good, I was playing far from the baseline and very slow…I knew that if I wanted to beat this guy, I needed to play very, very deep and very fast, because he’s playing with big rhythm. If I’m playing short like I did in Rome and Madrid, I have no chance to win.”
Gasquet’s coach, former Roland Garros champ Sergi Bruguera, pumped-up his charge in the dressing room, and the Frenchman stormed to the first set and an eventual quarterfinal berth.
The Frenchman will next meet No. 2 seed Andy Murray, who handled the big serving of No. 15 seed John Isner 7-6(9), 6-4, 6-3.
Gasquet is 0-4 against Murray in Grand Slam play.
“You never get a free point,” Gasquet said of Murray. “He has a very powerful mind.”
Also lining up a quarterfinal meeting was No. 3 Stan Wawrinka and unseeded Spaniard Albert Ramos. Ramos upset No. 8 Milos Raonic 6-2, 6-4, 6-4, and Wawrinka topped No. 22 Viktor Troicki 7-6(5), 6-7(7), 6-3, 6-2.
“I know that I may be able to tighten a few nuts and bolts here and there, to improve even more,” said Wawrinka, likely not sad to be facing Ramos rather than Raonic.
On court Monday at Roland Garros will be (12) David Goffin vs. Ernests Gulbis, (1) Novak Djokovic vs. (14) Roberto Bautista Agut, Marcel Granollers vs. (13) Dominic Thiem, and (11) David Ferrer vs. (7) Tomas Berdych.
MONDAY FRENCH OPEN SCHEDULE
Philippe-Chatrier Court 11:00 AM Start
David Goffin (BEL) vs. Ernests Gulbis (LAT)
Novak Djokovic (SRB) vs. Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP)
Serena Williams (USA) vs. Elina Svitolina (UKR)
Venus Williams (USA) vs. Timea Bacsinszky (SUI)
Suzanne-Lenglen Court 11:00 AM Start
Marcel Granollers (ESP) vs. Dominic Thiem (AUT)
Agnieszka Radwanska (POL) vs. Tsvetana Pironkova (BUL) To Finish 6-2 3-0
David Ferrer (ESP) vs. Tomas Berdych (CZE)
Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP) vs. Yulia Putintseva (KAZ)
Kiki Bertens (NED) vs. Madison Keys (USA)
Court 1 11:00 AM Start
Simona Halep (ROU) vs. Samantha Stosur (AUS) To Finish 5-3
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