French Open day 1: British singles contingent down to two after Dan Evans loses

French Open day 1: British singles contingent down to two after Dan Evans loses

Britain’s already small contingent at the French Open was reduced to two on the opening day when Dan Evans lost to Thanasi Kokkinakis.

The British number two branded his performance “shocking” in a 6-4 6-4 6-4 defeat, while the main talking point of second seed Aryna Sabalenka’s victory over Marta Kostyuk came after the match when the Roland Garros crowd booed Ukrainian Kostyuk for not shaking her Belarusian opponent’s hand.

Stefanos Tsitsipas survived a scare against Jiri Vesely but his fellow Greek Maria Sakkari was an early faller, the eighth seed losing to Czech Karolina Muchova for the second year in a row in Paris.

Picture of the day

Marta Kostyuk, left, was booed after refusing to shake Aryna Sabalenka's hand
Marta Kostyuk, left, was booed after refusing to shake Aryna Sabalenka’s hand (Christophe Ena/AP)

Quote of the day

Yannick Noah feels the love

This Roland Garros marks 40 years since Yannick Noah’s famous victory – the last time a Frenchman claimed a grand slam singles title.

The charismatic 63-year-old is being feted all fortnight and on Saturday combined his two passions, singing at a mini concert on Philippe Chatrier.

“I lived my best moment here, so it’s always special whether I’m walking around the stadium or outside courts,” said Noah.

“I have memories everywhere here, including my first kiss.”

Jabeur has options

Ons Jabeur is looking to take the next step after reaching two grand slam finals last year, losing to Elena Rybakina at Wimbledon and Iga Swiatek at the US Open.

The Tunisian joked: “I think, if it’s meant to be, I will get there one day. If it’s not, then I will go have a daughter and make her win Wimbledon.”

Fallen seeds

Men: Dan Evans (20), Ben Shelton (30)

Women: Maria Sakkari (8), Magda Linette (21), Zhang Shuai (29)

Who’s up next?

Cameron Norrie and Jack Draper will try to ensure Britain’s singles interest does not end on just the second day of the tournament.

Norrie, seeded 14th, faces erratic Frenchman Benoit Paire while 21-year-old Draper makes his Roland Garros debut against in-form Argentinian Tomas Etcheverry.

Novak Djokovic begins his campaign against American Aleksandar Kovacevic and top seed Carlos Alcaraz plays Flavio Cobolli, with the first night session match of the tournament pitting France’s Alexandre Muller against eighth seed Jannik Sinner.