PARIS (Reuters) - Five things to watch out for at the French Open on Wednesday.
* Post-match interviews in the spotlight
The behaviour of tennis players in their post-match interviews is bound to be under the microscope on Wednesday after Maxime Hamou was banished from the French Open for kissing and cuddling a TV journalist following his first-round exit.
Footage of the interview showed Hamou pulling the female journalist close before kissing her on the side of the head. As the reporter looked embarrassed and tried to push him away, he kissed her again (bit.ly/2sioBCV). The French Federation revoked his accreditation as a result.
* Stosur to let her tennis do the talking
Australian Sam Stosur will hope to let her tennis do the talking against Kirsten Flipkens, after weighing into a debate raging Down Under about whether the Australian Open’s Margaret Court Arena should be renamed given the 24-times grand slam singles champion’s opposition to gay marriage.
A semi-finalist last year, the 23rd seed said she thought the stadium should keep the name. But, in comments reported by the BBC, she suggested some competitors might refuse to play there.
* Things just keep getting ‘easier’ for Nadal
Rafa Nadal is already hotly tipped to win his 10th French Open title, but we now learn that doing so would be a walk in the park compared with the effort it took to win his second.
Or at least that’s what his uncle and long-time coach, Toni Nadal, reckons - a sobering thought for Dutchman Robin Haase as he prepares to lock horns with the claycourt master.
Two in a row?
Anett Kontaveit will be thrown onto a very big stage on Philippe Chatrier court to face defending champion Garbine Muguruza in the second round. But the in-form 21-year-old Estonian, who reached the quarter-finals in Rome and made the final in Biel, has already beaten the Spaniard once, a three-set win in Stuttgart in April.
Is Kiki back ?
French hope Kristina Mladenovic returns to court after pulling her back as she faces Italian Sara Errani in the second round.
The 13th seed almost withdrew from her first-round match after hurting her back but played through the pain to make sure the home crowd get another show on Court Suzanne Lenglen.
Reporting by John Stonestreet, Karolos Grohmann, and Julien Pretot, editing by Ed Osmond