Maria Sharapova sets up Karolina Pliskova clash in third round of French Open

Maria Sharapova will face sixth seed Karolina Pliskova in the French Open third round after beating Donna Vekic 7-5 6-4 on Thursday.

After two breaks apiece in the opening set, Sharapova claimed a crucial third in the 12th game to clinch the first set.

The two-time French Open champion moved into a 5-2 lead in the second set, but failed to serve it out before squandering five match points on Vekic’s serve.

However, it was sixth time lucky for the 28th seed, who won the 10th game after six deuces to seal her place in the next round.

The Russian will come up against Pliskova, after the Czech battled from a set down to beat compatriot Lucie Safarova.

Pliskova, who reached the semi-final at Roland Garros last year, fell behind to the world No 53, but battled back to win 3-6 6-4 6-1.

Elsewhere, a routine victory for Simona Halep saw the world No 1 beat American Taylor Townsend 6-3 6-1. The Romanian faces Andrea Petkovic in the third round.

Earlier in the day, 2016 champion Garbine Muguruza proved too strong for France’s Fiona Ferro, with the No 3 seed claiming a 6-4 6-3 victory to set up a match with Samantha Stosur.

Source.