What scenario for the semi-finals of the French at the US Open?

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What scenario for the semi-finals of the French at the US Open?

Caroline Garcia will have the opportunity on Thursday to smooth things over, to balance the balance sheet. For the moment, French women’s tennis is in deficit in the semi-finals at the US Open: one victory for two defeats. To bring the ratio to fifty-fiftyCaroline Garcia will have to succeed in beating for the first time Ons Jabeur. And it will therefore rather take inspiration from Mary Pierce than from Amélie Mauresmo. A look back at Les Bleues’ three semi-finals in New York.

Venus Williams and Amélie MAuresmo before their 2002 US Open semi-final. (R. Martin/L’Équipe)

Semi-finalist two months earlier at Wimbledon, where she could not do anything against Serena Williams (6-2, 6-1), Amélie Mauresmo has just had a very successful summer, winning the WTA 1000 in Montreal (victories along the way against Daniela Hantuchova and Jennifer Capriati) then losing narrowly in the quarterfinals, in New Haven, against Lindsay Davenport.

At Flushing Meadows, after three warm-up laps, she, who was then 9th in the world, won two titanic fights in a row. Against Kim Clijsters, 7th (4-6, 6-3, 7-5) then in quarters against Capriati, 3rd (4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-3). In the semi-finals, since this time she is not in Serena’s half of the table, it is Venus Williams, n°2, who stands in front of her. Once again, the Frenchwoman is hanging on immensely; she narrowly saves the right to play a third round but will never really pose a threat to the American (6-3, 5-7, 6-4). He will have to wait another three and a half years before winning, at the 2006 Australian Open, the first Grand Slam title of his life.

Elena Dementieva and Mary Pierce at the end of their 2005 US Open semi-final. (JM. Pochat/L'Équipe)

Elena Dementieva and Mary Pierce at the end of their 2005 US Open semi-final. (JM. Pochat/L’Équipe)

23rd in the world at the start of Roland-Garros 2005, Mary Pierce, 30, did not experience a prodigious start to the season. Only one top 20 on his list, 12 wins, 8 losses, 0 title. But the sequel will be crazy. She reached the Roland-Garros final losing only one set, before falling heavily in front of Justine Henin. Then succeeds his best Wimbledon (defeat in quarters against Venus Williams) and wins the WTA 1000 in San Diego. Along comes the US Open, where not a single opponent, including Amélie Mauresmo, Justine Henin and Jelena Jankovic, manages to score more than four games in a set against her. Yes, exactly like Caroline Garcia this year.

In the semi-finals, Mary Pierce (12th WTA) started less well, against the Russian Elena Dementieva, then 6th in the world, but she then regained her carburation from the previous rounds and went, in steamroller mode, towards the final (3-6 , 6-2, 6-2). It will be the sixth and last of his career in Majors. She will lose to Kim Clijsters, n°4 (6-3, 6-1).

Amélie Mauresmo and Maria Sharapova during their 2006 US Open semi-final. (JM. Pochat/L'Équipe)

Amélie Mauresmo and Maria Sharapova during their 2006 US Open semi-final. (JM. Pochat/L’Équipe)

2006 is an extraordinary season for Amélie Mauresmo. Already ranked No. 1 in the world in 2004, but without a Grand Slam crown, she finally broke the glass ceiling two years later, first by triumphing in Melbourne then by repeating the Temple, at Wimbledon, showing very resistant in the semi-final against Maria Sharapova (6-3, 3-6, 6-2) then in the final against Justine Henin (2-6, 6-3, 6-4).

She only played two matches (in New Haven) between her London coronation and the US Open, where she released Serena Williams in the round of 16 (6-4, 0-6, 6-2) then Dinara Safina in the quarters (6-2 , 6-3). In the semi-finals, a funny scenario happens to him. She reunites with Sharapova, who will totally outmatch her in the beginning and end. At first totally painless for the Russian, she cashed a 6-0 in 24 minutes! A winning forehand gave her her first break of the match, at the best time, as she led 5-4 in the second set. But in the last round, a bad first game reignited the initial trend and Mauresmo became the first player in the Open era to concede two 6-0 in the semi-finals of a Grand Slam.

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