The 2011 French Open has quietly moved on to the third round and like any tournament it has had it's shock and awe moments.
Here are some odds and ends--
1) The biggest shocker (by far) has occurred on the women's side in the second round. World No. 2 Kim Clijsters was stunned by unseeded and virtual unknown Aranxta Rus (3-6, 7-5, 6-1). Clijsters, who was going for her 3rd consecutive Grand Slam title, for some strange reason just completely fell apart in the third set. After the match she said, "I started doubting a little bit. When you start doubting yourself on any surface, but for me definitely on clay, it’s the wrong attitude to have.” Clijsters also said her injured ankle was perfectly fine and injuries had nothing to do with it. So was this just a once-in-a-lifetime lucky moment for the 20-year old Rus or is she a future star in the making?
2)Everyone is asking-- What's wrong with World No. 1 Rafael Nadal? Nadal has moved on to the third round but his first two matches (by his standards) have been somewhat bumpy. In the first round John Isner became the first human to take Rafa to 5 sets at Roland Garros. Rafa would eventually win the match (6-4, 6-7, 6-7, 6-2, 6-4) but Isner made quite a name for himself by taking the 5-time champion to the brink for the first time ever. In the second round, journeyman Pablo Andujar also played Rafa tough in a 7-5, 6-3, 7-6 loss. I guess when you're the closest thing to perfect any little bump on the road would make people scratch their heads and ask questions but, nonetheless, Rafa is in the third round and as it stands has a 40-1 record at Roland Garros for his career. 40-1? Mind-boggling, but true.
3) No. 10 Mardy Fish, yes Mardy Fish, is the lone American male to advance to the third round. On the women's side, unseeded Vania King and Bethanie Mattek-Sands are the only American women in the third round. What can I say? It's no secret that U.S. tennis is in the doldrums with a gloomy future ahead.
And last but most definitely not least--
To be continued....