Svetlana Kuznetsova and Francesca Schiavone have both won the French Open in their careers, in 2009 and 2010, respectively, and their 2011 Australian Open clash has remained the longest Grand Slam women’s match in history. Schiavone was the one who won that 2011 marathon and today the Italian recorded victory in yet another grinder: after three hours and 49 minutes the oldest player left in the draw celebrated a 6-7(11) 7-5 10-8 win in a match that turns out to be the third longest in Roland Garros history.
Journalists and fans always like to compare stats and recognize records, while players are focusing all their energy to staying alive. Here’s how Kuznetsova commented on the epic battle:
It’s for you guys to think about [the] hours and minutes. I was just trying to hold my serve.
And other players have learned their lesson, like Victoria Azarenka:
If I ever play again after Schiavo and Sveta I will warm up next day. 🙂 🙂 🙂
Kuznetsova won the first set in an hour and 22 minutes, which is longer that many WTA matches, then lost the second set despite being up a break initially, and in the third set the 18th-seeded Russian squandered a match point and by later netting a forehand volley sent the world No.92 Schiavone into the third round. (photo: Jimmie48)