Jasmine Paolini's perfect day in Paris helped by experienced partner Errani


Jasmine Paolini's perfect day in Paris helped by experienced partner Errani

Jasmine Paolini in action
Jasmine Paolini in actionReuters
Jasmine Paolini's (28) day at Roland Garros could not have gone any better, with the Italian reaching the French Open semi-finals in both singles and doubles on Wednesday and she said her experienced playing partner is a major part of that success.

Paolini's day began with a surprise win for the 12th seed over fourth seed Elena Rybakina, to reach her first Grand Slam semi, and she followed that up with a quarter-final doubles victory.

"Yeah, today was the perfect day, I think, singles and doubles," Paolini told reporters.

"The singles was a really tough match. I'm happy I managed to come back in the third set, because, you know, was tough after the second set.

"But, yeah, I'm really happy with my performance, and I'm also happy for the doubles, of course."

After her 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 win over Rybakina, Paolini took to the court alongside fellow-Italian Sara Errani, and the pair defeated American Emma Navarro and Russian Diana Shnaider 6-3, 6-3.

Paolini had never before gone past the fourth round at a Grand Slam in either singles or doubles, but 37-year-old Errani has been a finalist at Roland Garros in singles, and has won five Grand Slams in doubles.

The experienced Errani has been sitting with Paolini's team watching her on court, but for the 28-year-old, her playing partner provides much more than just support from the sidelines.

"I think she's helping me so much, you know, to play doubles with her, I can talk about tennis with her, I can ask her strategies," Paolini said.

"But also, some advice, how to step on court, what can I do today to play better. You know, it's somebody that I think can help me so much. She already did a Grand Slam final, so she already has been in this position.

"So I think she's just someone that can help me in many aspects."

Paolini's opponent in the semi-final will be 17-year-old Mirra Andreeva who caused an even bigger upset by beating world number two Aryna Sabalenka. Unlike Paolini, Andreeva decided to withdraw from her doubles match.

"For me, it's as important as singles, because if you enter in a competition, in my opinion, you have to finish," Paolini said.

"But, you know, that's my decision. I understand the other side. I don't want to criticise anyone. But for myself it was important to step on court and to try to win also the quarter-finals in doubles."

Andreeva may be an unexpected semi-final opponent, but the Russian teenager won their only previous meeting when they clashed at the Madrid Open.

"With Mirra, it's going to be a tough match. I played against her in Madrid, and she's a really great player," Paolini said.

"She's so young but she's so, so good mentally, and she can defend very well. She can serve well.

"It's going to be a tough match, but we are in the semi-final, so there is no chance to get easy matches."


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