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French Open Day 2 Men’s Recap: Which Five Set Epic Was Match Of The Day?

Rafael Nadal after defeat at the 2024 Australian Open.

There was more superb action on Day 2 at the French Open, with many dramatic men’s matches for fans to enjoy. Rafael Nadal’s blockbuster first round encounter with Alexander Zverev took place, while Australian Open champion Jannik Sinner and 2021 US Open winner Daniil Medvedev also took to the court. This article summarizes which players impressed, who struggled and the match that stood out the most. We at LWOT also recap the women’s matches on Day 2 in a separate article.

US Open Day 2 Men’s Recap

Who Looked Good

Alexander Zverev may have ended Rafael Nadal’s French Open career. He defeated the Spaniard 6-3 7-6 6-3. Nadal’s level would have been good enough to beat the vast majority of players in the draw. Unfortunately for him, Zverev played a superb match to overcome him. The 14-time Grand Slam champion spoke to the crowd after the match in emotional scenes, with Nadal saying he was unsure if that was his final match at Roland-Garros.

Jannik Sinner progressed with a 6-3 6-3 6-4 victory against Christopher Eubanks. The contest was closer than the final score suggests, with Sinner saving nine break points against the big-hitting American. Sinner managed to break serve five times to start his hunt for a second Grand Slam in a positive manner.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas was another player to make an impressive start at the French Open. He won a very tight opening set against Marton Fucsovics, before going through the gears to prevail 7-6 6-4 6-1. The 2021 runner-up at Roland-Garros will be tough to stop in that kind of form.

Daniil Medvedev avoided losing in the first round in Paris for a second year in a row. The 28-year-old needed four sets to beat Dominik Koepfer 6-3 6-4 5-7 6-3. Koepfer did well to take all three break point chances he had to be competitive, but the world No. 5 was the most likely winner throughout the contest.

Gael Monfils also shone at his home Grand Slam on Day 2. He became the second 37-year-old Frenchman to make the second round after fellow stalwart Richard Gasquet did the same on the opening day. Monfils defended superbly to knock out Thiago Seyboth Wild and show he is still capable of impressive tennis. The final score was 6-2 3-6 6-3 6-4.

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Who Looked Bad

29th seed Arthur Fils was unable to rise to the occasion in front of his home fans at the French Open. His tournament ended with a 3-6 6-4 4-6 2-6 defeat to Matteo Arnaldi. The 19-year-old did not play badly throughout the entire set but he made some bad decisions on important points in the sets that he lost, which cost him dearly.

Cameron Norrie was the other seeded player to exit on the second day. The Briton lost a dramatic contest 6-4 3-6 6-3 6-7 2-6 to Pavel Kotov. After four tight sets, the final set was very disappointing for Norrie. He surrendered the decider surprisingly easily, allowing the big-serving Kotov to dominate proceedings.

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Yoshihito Nishioka will also be disappointed with his performance. He was dominated from start to finish by Felix Auger-Aliassime, being knocked out by a score of 2-6 4-6 4-6. Nishioka failed to create a single break point during the match and was not at his consistent best at the French Open.

Match Of The Day

There were several contenders for match of the day. Alexander Shevchenko, Sebastian Baez, Filip Misolic, and Henri Squire all won their matches in a fifth set. Squire’s battle with Max Purcell was a particularly worthy contender, with the German coming through 12-10 in a deciding set tiebreak.

Frances Tiafoe’s epic tussle against Mattia Bellucci is the winner of the best match on Day 2 at the French Open. The American recovered from going an early break down to take the opening set 6-3.  But his underdog opponent did not let his head drop after that. Bellucci’s blistering and fearless brand of tennis saw him claim the next two sets 6-3 and 7-6. That included winning a dramatic tiebreak 8-6.

Tiafoe, who has endured a tough season so far this year, could have let his head drop after that. To his immense credit, he dug in and fought his way to a decider after the fourth set went his way. The fifth set saw a series of incredible shots from both players. This included a combination of powerful hitting, drop shots and net play. But after breaking at 4-4, Tiafoe served it out to seal his place in the second round with a 6-3 3-6 6-7 6-4 6-4 victory.

Main Photo Credit: Mike Frey-USA TODAY Sports


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