If in the adult grid of Roland Garros there are no representatives of Russia left in any of the categories, then in junior competitions domestic athletes again work wonders, as before at the Australian Open. In January, the final was held in Melbourne, in which Mirra Andreeva met with compatriot Alina Korneeva, who eventually won. The girls then staged a real thriller on the court, but the younger, less titled tennis player turned out to be stronger in the confrontation.
At Roland Garros, Andreeva, along with her sister, qualified for the main draw of the major, where she reached the third round. Therefore, the girls have one less formidable opponent. Korneeva, being a little younger (she is still 15 years old), again showed up for junior competitions, in which she was seeded third.
Alina confirmed the status of one of the favorites: she easily reached the semifinals, giving only one of her sets in four matches. Moreover, it happened in the first confrontation with the German Ella Seidel. The meeting turned out to be difficult for Korneeva. She gave the first game, managed to take the next one only in the tie-break and then still seized the initiative.
Thus, the athlete has an amazing opportunity to repeat the success at the Australian Open and win the second junior major in a row. To do this, in the semifinals, you need to cope with another representative of Russia, Alisa Oktyabrev, who is only 14 years old.
The Russian created a sensation in the quarterfinals, knocking out one of the favorites of Roland Garros, the second seed Clairwy Nguna with a score of 7:5, 6:1. The American made many more unforced errors (44 against 18 for Oktyabreva), which ultimately led to defeat.
According to Alice, she understood what a serious rival she got, and the girl just tried to enjoy what was happening, but with a score of 5:5 in the first game after she managed to recoup from the setball, the tennis player believed in herself.
"It seems to me that after that the American broke down. As soon as I won the set, I realized that I could win the match," Oktyabreva said in an interview with the Youtube channel "More!".
At the same time, in the semifinal match with Korneeva, she also plans to enjoy tennis in the first place. The girl is just glad that she was at the major.
"I had a dream come true! " Roland Garros is my favorite Grand Slam tournament. I love the soil. And I feel at home in France. Alina won the Australian Open. And where, if not here, to meet with such serious rivals. I will enjoy tennis," Oktyabreva promised.
Thus, in the decisive match of the junior Roland Garros, there will definitely be one Russian woman. However, a repetition of the Australian Open is not excluded. Because Anastasia Guryeva will play in the second semi-final.
She is already 18 years old, but the previous majors in France were not the best for the girl: the athlete could not overcome the first round. And finally, this season, luck was on her side.
The quarterfinal meeting with the Danish Rebecca Munch-Mortensen was very difficult. The Russian won the first set, but then gave the second. The tennis player, as she later admitted, was very hampered by excitement. Since Guryeva had never gone so far in Grand Slam tournaments before.
"At the beginning of the match I was very worried, but then I coped with it. When I lost the second game, my nerves gave up a little, but I tried to do everything. Still, you understand that this is a major tournament. And I'm 18, this is my last year as a junior," explained the Russian.
The third set was held in a bitter struggle. The opponents confidently took their serves, exchanging breaks only once. And with the score 6:5, Anastasia was still able to take the game at the reception, realizing the first matchball earned.
"At that moment, I realized that I needed to change something in my game, because otherwise she would not give me a point. And she began to act in the same way as on the serve, "Guryeva said.
Interestingly, this time the semifinals could have been purely Russian if Alevtina Ibragimova had won her match on Thursday. She fought Luxyane Pérez-Alarcón and was very close to victory. In the third set, with a score of 5:4, the tennis player earned a matchball, but failed to convert it, which the Peruvian took advantage of, transferring the game to a tie-break.
The shortened game began unsuccessfully for the domestic athlete, she lost 3:7, and as a result failed to catch up. Thus, Guryeva will meet with Perez-Alarcón in the semifinals. At the same time, according to the girl, she is very glad that so many compatriots reached the decisive matches of Roland Garros.
"It's nice to play with girls, because in any case we are from the same country. And we are just proud of this result," the tennis player concluded.
If Guryeva wins in the semifinals, she will be able to set a kind of record. Russian athletes played nine times in the finals of the junior Roland Garros, while they never met there with compatriots. The winners of the tournament were Nadezhda Petrova and Daria Kasatkina.