Danielle Collins’ upset seals all-American quarterfinal at French Open

Danielle Collins
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American Danielle Collins rounded out a historically unlikely octet of French Open women’s quarterfinalists.

Collins upset 30th-seeded Tunisian Ons Jabeur 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 on Tuesday to become the fifth unseeded player to make the quarters at Roland Garros. The match was postponed from Monday due to rain in Paris.

It’s the first time a majority of female quarterfinalists at a Grand Slam are unseeded since seeds were expanded from 16 to 32 in 2001, according to Gracenote.

Collins, a 2019 Australian Open semifinalist who is ranked 57th, plays countrywoman and fourth seed Sofia Kenin on Wednesday for a spot in the semifinals.

“I’m still trying to figure out this tour thing,” joked the 26-year-old Collins, who went the unconventional route for U.S. women, playing college tennis at Virginia before turning pro. “It’s a little bit different than my life before.”

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For the fifth time in six years, a U.S. woman will be in the French Open semifinals. The last U.S. man to make a French Open semi: Andre Agassi on his spirited run to the title in 1999.

It will mark the 10th straight Slam overall that a U.S. woman makes the semifinals, matching the nation’s longest streak in 17 years. Serena Williams made 10 straight Slam semifinals in her last 10 Slams before having daughter Olympia.

Later Tuesday, 131st-ranked Argentina Nadia Podoroska became the first qualifier to reach a women’s major semifinal since Alexandra Stevenson in 1999. She upset No. 3 seed Elina Svitolina of Ukraine 6-2, 6-4.

“The toughest part for me was like two or three years ago,” Podoroska said. “I had too many injuries. I drop my ranking. I been like eight months out of the tour [due to a right wrist injury]. Then I didn’t have money to start playing tournaments.”

Podoroska next faces 54th-ranked Pole Iga Swiatek, who dispatched 159th-ranked Italian qualifier Martina Trevisan 6-3, 6-1. Podoroska and Swiatek are ranked lower than any previous French Open women’s finalist (Jelena Ostapenko was 47th in 2017, when she won the title).

The other quarterfinal on Wednesday pits seventh-seeded Czech Petra Kvitova against 66th-ranked German Laura Siegemund.

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