PARIS (Reuters) - It’s ‘Kiki’ time again as local favorite Kristina Mladenovic takes on Swiss Timea Bacsinszky on a red-hot Court Philippe Chatrier in a French Open quarter-final clash on Tuesday.
Mladenovic, one of the pre-tournament favorites, has taken the crowd by storm with her never-say-die attitude and ability to thrive under pressure, and the hope on the Roland Garros walkways is that she will succeed Mary Pierce, who was the last Frenchwoman to lift the Suzanne Lenglen Cup.
Bacsinszky, however, will be a tough nut to crack.
The number 30 seed reached the semi-finals here in 2015 while Mladenovic is playing in only her second grand slam quarter-final.
Following the French hope onto center court will be nine-time men’s champion Rafa Nadal who, after a sensational start, is expected to devour fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta.
Resurgent 11th-seeded Dane Caroline Wozniacki faces Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko on Court Suzanne Lenglen before a highly-anticipated quarter-final clash between men’s defending champion Novak Djokovic and Austrian wunderkind Dominic Thiem.
Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Ken Ferris