PARIS (AP) — The Latest on the French Open (all times local):
Hobbling around court on a gimpy right knee, two-time Australian Open winner Victoria Azarenka is out of the French Open in the first round, but not without putting up a fight.
The fifth seed from Belarus locked up the knee in the second set when preparing to return the serve of Karin Knapp from Italy. Azarenka got treatment, laying on a mat on the red-clay court, and endured through a tiebreaker to level the match at one-set all, saving a match point.
Knapp raced away in the third set as Azarenka struggled to run or bend her knees to serve. There were unsympathetic laughs from the Court 1 crowd when she seized up again in the set’s second game, clutching the knee and in obvious pain.
She got more treatment but eventually called it quits with Knapp leading 6-3, 6-7(6), 4-0.
Novak Djokovic thinks the ATP and WTA tours should be offering ranking points to players who participate in the Olympics.
The No. 1-ranked Djokovic, who owns 11 Grand Slam titles and earned a bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing Games, said Tuesday after winning his first-round match at the French Open that he “would definitely encourage” a reconsideration of the decision to not award points in Rio de Janeiro this year.
At past Olympics, tennis players could earn ranking points.
Djokovic called the Olympics “arguably the fifth Grand Slam.”
Even the normally intense Rafael Nadal cracked a mid-match smile in appreciation of the ‘tweener he produced Tuesday at the French Open.
The bit of magic came in the next-to-last game of the nine-time champion’s lickety-split 6-1, 6-1, 6-1 victory over Sam Groth.
Chasing a lob by Groth, Nadal raced to the baseline and, with his back to the net, smacked a forehand between his legs. By then, Groth was up at the net, but the ball zipped by him for a down-the-line passing winner.
Nadal grinned and raised both arms overhead as the Court Suzanne Lenglen crowd roared.
Check out the video posted on the tournament’s Twitter feed.
Andy Murray says his sometimes fiery on-court behavior wasn’t the cause of his split from coach Amelie Mauresmo.
Speaking after a first-round win at the French Open, Murray insisted “we certainly didn’t fall out,” and their relationship remains “good” despite the end of their ground-breaking, two-year coaching tie last month.
Murray was the first high-profile male tennis player to hire a female coach. Before the French Open, two-time major winner Mauresmo said Murray was “complex” to work with and they “reached the end” of what they could achieve together.
Murray says he and Mauresmo parted on good terms, and “she sent me a message a couple of days ago.”
“To say that the reason that we stopped working together is because of my behavior on the court, that is not true,” he said.
Venus Williams avoided a second consecutive first-round Grand Slam loss — and a second consecutive first-round French Open loss.
The ninth-seeded American needed nearly 2 hours to get past 82nd-ranked Anett Kontaveit of Estonia 7-6 (5), 7-6 (4) on Court 1 at Roland Garros on Tuesday.
Less than a month shy of her 36th birthday, Williams is the oldest woman in the tournament.
She is a seven-time Grand Slam champion, but she dropped her opening match at the Australian Open in January, and also exited in the first round at the French Open in 2013 and 2015. Williams hasn’t been past the second round in Paris since reaching the fourth round in 2010.
Top-ranked Novak Djokovic is through to the second round at the French Open.
Bidding to complete a career Grand Slam in Paris after losing in the final three times over the past four years, Djokovic defeated 95th-ranked Yen-hsun Lu of Taiwan 6-4, 6-1, 6-1 on Tuesday.
Djokovic was in complete control, broke his opponent seven times and closed out the match with a superb drop shot.
Speaking in French during his on-court interview, Djokovic says “these two weeks might be the most important in the whole season.”
The French Open’s Twitter feed posted a video of the crowd at Court Suzanne Lenglen giving 2010 title winner and 2011 runner-up Francesca Schiavone a standing ovation after her 6-2, 6-4 first-round loss to 26th-seeded Kristina Mladenovic.
And Tuesday’s tweet included this line: “For her last Roland Garros, Francesca Schiavone, 35 years old and the champion in 2010, deserved a real ovation.”
That was news to Schiavone.
“They came to conclusions they should not have,” she said.
Schiavone was surprised to get that send-off when she left the court, saying that the poor way she played certainly didn’t merit that sort of adulation. And she was unaware anyone thought this might be her final appearance at the clay-court Grand Slam tournament.
Besides, the Italian explained, “When I retire, I’d like to retire on my couch, without any sort of celebration.”
Schiavone told reporters: “Roland Garros announced my retirement, but I didn’t. So you can stand up, all of you, and go back to work in the office, because I didn’t say that. I will announce when I will want to stop.”
Former Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard says she has overcome an eating disorder brought on by “a lot of pressure” and the added expectation that followed her breakthrough year in 2014.
Speaking after a first-round victory Tuesday at the French Open, Bouchard said she felt as though food “would come right back up” and struggled with weight loss in 2015, when her ranking slipped.
She says “before matches I was very nervous and definitely had trouble eating. And not just before matches, (it) happened to me at other meals as well.”
The 22-year-old Canadian finished 2014 with a career-high year-end ranking of seventh, after her Wimbledon final loss to Petra Kvitova and semifinal appearances at the French Open and Australian Open.
John Isner used 40 aces to move into the French Open’s second round with a 6-7 (4), 7-6 (12), 7-6 (7), 7-5 victory over 60th-ranked John Millman of Australia in a match played over two days.
The 15th-seeded Isner won both sets played Tuesday after the match was suspended by darkness right after the American managed to eke out the second set to pull even on Monday night.
Andy Murray completed his ninth career comeback from two sets down, erasing that big deficit and beating 37-year-old Radek Stepanek 3-6, 3-6, 6-0, 6-3, 7-5 in the first round of the French Open.
They finished the match Tuesday after play was suspended because of darkness Monday night with Murray leading 4-2 in the fourth set.
The second-seeded Murray twice was two points from losing while serving and trailing 5-4 in the fifth. But he held there, then broke Stepanek and served it out.
Rafael Nadal is back doing what he does best: Demolishing opponents on the red clay of Roland Garros.
The nine-time champion’s 6-1, 6-1, 6-1 victory against Sam Groth of Australia added another notch to the Spanish player’s stunning record in Paris, now at 71 wins, with just two losses.
Groth, an Australian ranked 100 who has yet to make the second round of the French in two visits, lacked the variety of shots and power to derail Nadal’s pursuit of a 15th major title.
“So bad, so bad,” he muttered to himself after netting a backhand as Nadal raced through the first set. In all, they were on court for 80 minutes.
Seeded fourth, Nadal lost last year in the quarterfinals to Novak Djokovic, ending a 39-match winning streak at Roland Garros.
Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber has lost in the first round at the French Open.
The third-seeded Kerber was beaten 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 by 58th-ranked Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands.
It’s the second time in three years that the Australian Open women’s champion lost in the first round at Roland Garros — the same thing happened to Li Na in 2014.
Kerber received treatment on her left shoulder at the changeover as she trailed 3-0 in the deciding set. The left-handed Kerber then briefly left the court and returned to win her service game but could not break back and lost the match.
Kerber arrived in Paris on the back of early losses in both Madrid and Rome. Last week she pulled out of the Nuremberg tournament because of her shoulder injury.
Tessah Andrianjafitrimo lasted just 51 minutes and 12 games in her first match in the main draw at the French Open.
The 17-year-old French player, a wild card, lost 6-0, 6-0 to Wang Qiang of China on Court 17.
First on Court Philippe Chatrier is Angelique Kerber, the third-seeded Australian Open champion.
Kerber, yet to advance past the quarterfinals at Roland Garros, takes on 58th-ranked Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands.
Kerber lost her opening matches in Madrid and Rome and has been struggling with a shoulder injury that prevented her from playing at Nuremberg last week. But the German player said the pain has eased and she can serve normally.
Bertens arrives at Roland Garros in fine form, having won the title in Nuremberg coming through the qualifying stages.
Novak Djokovic begins his bid to win a fourth straight major title against 95th-ranked Yen-hsun Lu of Taiwan on Tuesday at the French Open.
Also, nine-time champion Rafael Nadal opens against big-serving Sam Groth and Serena Williams faces 77th-ranked Magdalena Rybarikova as she starts the defense of her title.
Also on court will be second-seeded Andy Murray, resuming his first-round match against Radek Stepanek. The Czech took the first two sets 6-3, 6-3 before Murray found his rhythm and won the third 6-0. Murray was leading the fourth 4-2 when play was suspended Monday because of darkness.
The weather is expected to remain dry.