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UCLA at the 2022 French Open: Day 10

May 23, 2022
Ena Shibahara (Photo: Phil Didion via Imagn Content Services, LLC)

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 1

Ena Shibahara, who starred for the UCLA women's tennis team in 2017 and 2018, will play for her first Grand Slam championship Thursday at Roland-Garros. The event's mixed doubles title is up for grabs Thursday between the second-seeded team of Shibahara and Wesley Koolhof and the pair of Ulrikke Eikerei and Joran Vliegen. The day's first match on Court Philippe Chatrier will begin at 3 a.m. PT.

Shibahara and Koolhof faced off against Gabriela Dabrowski and John Peers, seeded third, in the semifinal round. After encountering a 1-3 deficit in the first set, Shibahara and Koolhof collected the final five games. They needed just one break of serve in the second, doing so at 1-1 en route to their 6-3, 6-4 victory.

Bruin Jean-Julien Rojer, meanwhile, is in search of a spot in the men's tennis final. The 12th-seeded combination of Rojer and Marcelo Arevalo takes on No. 15 Rohan Bopanna and Matwe Middelkoop at 3 a.m. PT on Court Simonne-Mathieu.

MONDAY, MAY 30

Two Bruins reached semifinals Monday at Roland-Garros, as Jean-Julien Rojer and Ena Shibahara were victorious in the men's and mixed doubles tournaments, respectively.

The 12th-seeded combination of Rojer and Marcelo Arevalo went to a first-set tiebreaker with Rafael Matos and David Vega Hernandez, as neither side was able to break the other's serve. Rojer and Arevalo built a 5-3 lead in the tiebreaker, only to have Matos and Vega Hernandez run off three consecutive points and place themselves one away from the opening-set triumph. Rojer and Arevalo responded by taking the final three points, though, and went into Set 2 with momentum. They rode that to a break in the first game and that was all that was needed. With their 7-6(6), 6-3 win, Rojer and Arevalo advanced to face Lloyd Glasspool/Harri Heliovaara or Rohan Bopanna/Matwe Middelkoop. This represents Rojer's third semifinal-round appearance at the French Open, previously accomplishing the feat in 2012 and 2015. He has twice been a semifinalist at the Australian Open (2011, 2015) and took home titles at Wimbledon (2015) and the US Open (2017).

The duo of Shibahara and Wesley Koolhof, seeded second, jumped out to a 3-0 first-set lead with an early break against Matthew Ebden/Samantha Stosur. Holds the rest of the way meant a 6-3 Set 1 win for Shibahara/Koolhof. The pairs alternated breaks and Shibahara/Koolhof added another at 4-4. A hold followed, giving them the 6-3, 6-4 victory. Shibahara and Koolhof will next meet Gonzalo Escobar/Lucie Hradecká or No. 3 Gabriela Dabrowski/John Peers. The semifinal-round trip represents the first as a mixed-doubles player for Shibahara. She has twice reached that stage in women's doubles draws – at the Australian Open (2022) and Wimbledon (2021).

SUNDAY, MAY 29

Jean-Julien Rojer, who starred at UCLA from 2000-02, advanced to the men's doubles quarterfinals Sunday, while Bruins Mackenzie McDonald and Ena Shibahara were eliminated from the men's and women's doubles fields, respectively.

Rojer and partner Marcelo Arevalo, seeded 12th, knocked off No. 7 Tim Puetz/Michael Venus in three sets. Rojer/Arevalo collected the difference-making break of serve in the first set at 3-3. Puetz and Venus went up by a 4-1 margin in the second and never looked back for a 6-2 answer. The third was all Rojer/Arevalo, though, as the pair earned two consecutive breaks to start the set and dropped just one game for a 6-4, 2-6, 6-1 victory. Rojer and Arevalo next meet Rafael Matos and David Vega Hernandez at approximately 4:40 a.m. PT Monday.

The team of Shibahara and Asia Muhammad, the No. 9 seed on the women's side, had its time ended by Madison Keys and Taylor Townsend. In a marathon first set, alternating breaks sent it to a tiebreaker. Shibahara and Muhammad took three of the first four points and held leads at 6-5, 7-6, 8-7 and 10-9 before being overcome for a 14-12 decision. Keys and Townsend followed with second-set breaks at 2-2 and 4-2 en route to a 7-6(12), 6-2 win. Shibahara is still standing in the mixed doubles draw, where she will again team with Wesley Koolhof as the tournament's No. 2 seed against Matthew Ebden/Samantha Stosur Monday at approximately 3:20 a.m. PT.

McDonald and Tommy Paul were broken by No. 6 Koolhof/Neal Skupski for 0-2 in the first set and could not respond. Breaks by Koolhof and Skupski at 1-1 and 4-2 followed and the pair prevailed by a 6-3, 6-2 score. The third-round showings in the singles and doubles draws by McDonald represented career bests.

SATURDAY, MAY 28

Ena Shibahara, who twice earned All-America status at UCLA, won two second-round doubles matches at Roland-Garros Saturday, while three other Bruins had career-best showings stopped.

Shibahara opened the day alongside Asia Muhammad in the women's draw. The pair, seeded ninth, made the difference in Set 1 with a break of serve at 1-1. Three breaks followed in the second, including one to close out the 6-4, 6-3 victory. Shibahara and Muhammad next face Madison Keys and Taylor Townsend Sunday (approximately 4:40 a.m. PT).

Shibahara also picked up a berth in the mixed third round, playing with Wesley Koolhof. A break a 1-0 was all the tournament's No. 2 seed needed in the first set. There were three consecutive breaks in the second, but two collected by Shibahara/Koolhof for the 6-3, 6-4 win. The tandem next matches up with Matthew Ebden and Samantha Stosur.

Sandwiched between Shibahara's matches on Court 13 was a men's doubles showdown between Maxime Cressy/Feliciano Lopez and No. 1-seed Rajeev Ram/Joe Salisbury. The contest's first break sealed Ram and Salisbury's 7-5 opening-set win. The second set was more of the same, with Ram and Salisbury capturing the elusive break with a 5-4 advantage. The 7-5, 6-4 decision put an end to Bruin Cressy's career-best Grand Slam doubles performance.

UCLA alumnae Catherine Harrison and partner Ulrikke Eikeri forced a first-set tiebreaker against Misaki Doi and Ajla Tomljanovic, but were edged out there in a 7-4 result. Doi and Tomljanovic took the first three games of the second before Harrison/Eikeri countered for 3-4. Doi/Tomljanovic seized the final two games for a 7-6(4), 6-3 victory, however. Harrison and Eikeri defeated the field's No. 6 seed to reach that point.

The final singles participant out of UCLA, Mackenzie McDonald, was eliminated from the men's draw by No. 11-seed Jannik Sinner of Italy. All Sinner needed in the first set was a break at 3-2. The second saw McDonald build a 5-2 advantage before Sinner answered the force a tiebreaker, which he took by an 8-6 margin. Sinner then jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the third and ultimately prevailed, 6-3, 7-6(6), 6-3.

In addition to Shibahara, McDonald and Jean-Julien Rojer will be in action on the men's side Sunday. The 12th-seeded combination of Rojer and partner Marcelo Arevalo meets No. 7-seed Tim Puetz/Michael Venus in the first match on Court 7 (2 a.m. PT). McDonald and partner Tommy Paul take on No. 6-seed Koolhof/Neal Skupski second on Court 14 (approximately 3:20 a.m. PT).

FRIDAY, MAY 27

Former UCLA standouts Mackenzie McDonald and Jean-Julien Rojer were victorious again in the men's doubles draw at Roland-Garros, with each advancing to the third round by way of a three-set win.

McDonald and partner Tommy Paul upset No. 10-seed Jamie Murray/Bruno Soares, 7-6(7), 4-6, 6-3. In the first-set tiebreaker, McDonald and Paul rallied from a 3-6 deficit, taking six of the final seven points. The difference in the second set came when Murray and Soares registered a break of serve at 4-3. In the third, McDonald and Paul earned a break at 2-1. Murray/Soares answered at 2-4, but McDonald and Paul broke back en route to their victory. McDonald/Paul will next see No. 6-seed Wesley Koolhof/Neal Skupski.

Rojer and partner Marcelo Arevalo, seeded 12th, needed a comeback effort versus Enzo Couacaud and Manuel Guinard. Rojer/Arevalo was broken out of the gate and could not provide an answer in the first set, falling by a 6-3 score. In the second, Rojer and Arevalo overcame a 1-4 deficit, taking six of the last seven games for a 7-5 response. Then, in the decider, Rojer/Arevalo collected a pivotal break at 4-4 and closed out the 3-6, 7-5, 6-4 result. Rojer and Arevalo next face No. 7-seed Tim Puetz/Michael Venus.v

Court 13 will feature a Bruin in each of its matches Saturday, starting with Ena Shibahara and her partner, Asia Muhammed. The seventh-seeded women's doubles pair is set to take on Kristina Kucova and Anastasia Potapova in the second round. Next up will be Maxime Cressy and partner Feliciano Lopez, who have the task of defeating men's doubles No. 1 seed Rajeev Ram/Joe Salisbury in the third round. Finally, Shibahara will return court with Wesley Koolhof for the mixed doubles second round. Shibahara/Koolhof take on Matwe Middelkoop and Demi Schuurs. McDonald will attempt to advance again in the men's singles draw when he faces No. 11 Jannik Sinner of Italy in the first match on Court Simonne-Mathieu. Catherine Harrison and partner Ulrikke Eikeri are slated to go on third on Court 14, where they will meet Misaki Doi and Ajla Tomljanovic.

THURSDAY, MAY 26

It was a near-perfect day for UCLA tennis alumni at Roland-Garros, where Mackenzie McDonald made the singles third round for the first time in his career, while Maxime Cressy and Ena Shibahara advanced in the doubles draws.

McDonald put forth a dominant effort against No. 22-seed Nikoloz Basilashvili, earning a break of serve out of the gate to set the tone. He would earn two more at 3-3 and 5-3 in the first set. McDonald took the first five games of the second en route to a 6-1 decision there. Then, in the third, he rallied from 0-3 and 1-4 deficits to close out his 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 victory. Next up for McDonald is a showdown with No. 11-seed Jannik Sinner.

Cressy and Feliciano Lopez downed No. 15-seed Maximo Gonzalez and Marcelo Melo in the men's doubles second round, 6-4, 6-4. Cressy and Lopez trailed 1-3 and 2-4 in Set 1 before taking the final four games of the first set. In the second, they broke the serve of Gonzalez/Melo at 5-4 to seal the win. Cressy and Feliciano have No. 1 Rajeev Ram/Joe Salisbury or Miomir Kecmanovic/Nicholas Monroe standing between them and the quarterfinals.

The women's doubles No. 9-seed, made up of Shibahara and Asia Muhammad. The pair was knotted with Elsa Jacquemot and Selena Janicijevic at 2-2 in the first set before taking 14 of the final 15 games for a 6-2, 6-1 win. Shibahara and Muhammad meet Kristina Kucova and Anastasia Potapova next. Shibahara had a tougher go of it in the mixed doubles first round, where she played opposite fellow Bruin Jean-Julien Rojer. Shibahara and Wesley Koolhof, seeded second, dropped the first set before bouncing back to take the second. The first-to-10 tiebreaker saw Shibahara and Koolhof take the final four points for a 3-6, 6-4, 1-0(6) victory. Next up for them is a matchup with Matwe Middelkoop and Demi Schuurs.

A pair of Friday men's doubles matches feature former UCLA standouts. In the opening match on Court 7 (2 a.m. PT), McDonald and partner Tommy Paul meet No. 10-seed Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares. Then, in the third contest on Court 8 (approximately 4:35 a.m. PT), the 12th-seeded duo of Rojer and Marcelo Arevalo take on Enzo Couacaud and Manuel Guinard.

WEDNESDAY, MAY 25

Catherine Harrison and Mackenzie McDonald earned wins in the French Open women's and men's doubles tournaments Wednesday, adding to the tally of second-round-bound UCLA alumni in Paris.

Harrison, who earned her first WTA title in March at the Monterrey Open, is competing in her first Grand Slam at Roland-Garros. Harrison and partner Ulrikke Eikeri started the debut in style, upsetting the sixth-seeded pair of Alexa Guarachi and Andreja Klepac, 6-2, 6-4, on Court 3. Harrison and Eikeri dropped the first two games of the first set before taking the next seven. The back-and-forth second then saw Harrison and Eikeri close out the victory with a break of serve. Harrison/Eikeri next faces the winner between Misaki Doi/Ajla Tomljanovic and Vivian Heisen/Panna Udvardy.

McDonald, who won in the singles first round Monday, collaborated with Tommy Paul on a 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 win versus Aleksandr Nedovyesov and Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi. In Set 1, Nedovyesov/Qureshi earned a break at 4-3 and capitalized on it. McDonald and Paul made a statement in the second, taking the first three games and four of the first five en route to their answer. A break at 3-2 in the third proved all McDonald/Paul needed in the final frame, setting up a second-round showdown with the 10th-seeded tandem of Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares.

Giron and partner Kwon Soon-woo were tasked with taking down the top-seeded duo of Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury in the finale on Court 12. An early first-set break set the tone for Ram/Salisbury, came out on top of a 6-3, 6-2 result to advance.

It will be a busy Thursday for Bruin Ena Shibahara, who is part of the women's and mixed doubles draws. Seeded ninth on the women's side, Shibahara and Asia Muhammed will take on Elsa Jacquemot/Selena Janicijevic in the second match on Court 10 (approximately 3:15 a.m PT). Then, up fourth on Court 11 (approximately 5:50 a.m. PT) is a matchup of former UCLA standouts, as the second-seeded mixed team of Shibahara and Wesley Koolhof takes on Jean-Julien Rojer and partner Guarachi. Maxime Cressy and partner Feliciano Lopez will get things started on Court 8 (2 a.m. PT), with hopes of taking down No. 15-seed Maximo Gonzalez/Marcelo Melo. McDonald, meanwhile, is looking for his first third-round trip in singles play. He meets 12th-seeded Nikoloz Basilashvili third on Court 12 (approximately 5:15 a.m. PT).

TUESDAY, MAY 24

Former UCLA men's tennis All-America honorees Maxime Cressy and Jean-Julien Rojer were victorious in their French Open doubles matches Tuesday, the second day of main-draw competition.

Cressy and partner Feliciano Lopez needed to come from behind against Roman Jebavy and Matej Sabanov, dropping the first set by a 6-4 margin. The second saw Cressy and Lopez take four of the first five games en route to a 6-3 answer. Then, in the decider, Cressy and Lopez earned a pivotal break of serve at 4-4 before closing out their 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 victory. They will next face the 15th-seeded combination of Maximo Gonzalez and Marcelo Melo.

The 12th-seeded pair of Rojer and Marcelo Arevelo traded early first-set breaks with Hans Hach Verdugo and Philipp Oswald. Holds followed, leading to a tiebreaker. There, Rojer and Arevalo overcame a 2-4 deficit for a 7-5 win. Rojer and Arevalo would set the tone in the second with a break out of a gate, then sealed their victory with another. With the 7-6(5), 6-3 result, Rojer and Arevalo earned a matchup with the winner between Federico Delbonis/Hugo Dellien and Enzo Couacaud/Manuel Guinard.

Catherine Harrison will team with Ulrikke Eikeri against No. 6-seed Alexa Guarachi/Andreja Klepac Wednesday at 2 a.m. PT. Second up on Court 8, at approximately 3:15 a.m. PT, Mackenzie McDonald and Tommy Paul take on Aleksandr Nedovyesov/Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi. Marcos Giron and Kwon Soon-woo will play the final match on Court 12, taking on top-seeded Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury at approximately 6:35 a.m. PT.

MONDAY, MAY 23

Mackzenzie McDonald was victorious on the first day of main-draw action at the French Open, while fellow former UCLA men's tennis standouts Maxime Cressy and Marcos Giron suffered losses. Each of the three players is also in the doubles field.

McDonald was slow out of the gate against Italian Franco Agamenone, dropping the first set by a 6-1 score. He bounced back in a major way in Set 2, taking the first five games en route to a 6-2 answer. The players traded breaks of serve early in the third set, but the difference was late, when McDonald took the 5-3 advantage. He would follow by holding serve. Alternating early breaks in the fourth set led to a tiebreaker, which McDonald took by a 7-3 score. He will compete in the tournament's singles second round for the third time.

McDonald next meets 22nd-seeded Nikoloz Basilashvili of Georgia, who outlasted Cressy in five sets. Cressy took the first two games in convincing fashion and served for the match at 8-7 of the third-set tiebreaker, but Basilashvili took the final three points, as well as the fourth and fifth sets, for a 3-6, 2-6, 7-6(8), 6-4, 6-4 victory. Giron, meanwhile, was tripped up by No. 18-seed Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria in a 6-1, 6-1, 6-1 decision.

Doubles play starts Tuesday. UCLA alumni Cressy (with Feliciano Lopez) and Jean-Julien Rojer (Marcelo Arevalo) are set for action on the first day. Rojer and Arevalo are seeded 12th. Wednesday will see Giron (Kwon Soon-woo), McDonald (Tommy Paul) and former women's All-Americans Catherine Harrison (Ulrikke Eikeri) and Ena Shibahara (Asia Muhammad) get started. Shibahara/Muhammad is the tournament's No. 9 seed. Rojer (Alexa Guarachi) and Shibahara (Wesley Koolhof) are also in the mixed doubles field. Shibahara/Koolhof is seeded No. 2.