French Open 2014: Highlighting Most Dominant Performances of Round 2

Chris RolingFeatured ColumnistMay 29, 2014

Britain's Andy Murray returns in his second round match of the French Open tennis tournament against Australia's Marinko Matosevic at the Roland Garros stadium, in Paris, France, Thursday, May 29, 2014. Murray won in three sets 6-3, 6-1, 6-3. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler)
Michel Spingler/Associated Press

Much of the attention leveled at the spectacle at Roland Garros so far this year has been of the negative variety.

With big names like the Williams sisters and Stan Wawrinka tanking early on, the narrative of the 2014 French Open makes loads of sense.

But don't be fooled—dominant players are still routing the competition with ease in the early goings before what are sure to be fateful matchups later on in the tournament.

Rather than focus on those now forced to watch from the sidelines, let's dial in on some of the most dominant performances of Round 2.


Andy Murray Wallops Marinko Matosevic, 6-3 6-1 6-3

Michel Spingler/Associated Press

Many were ready to add Andy Murray to the casualty list of the upset-happy proceedings in Paris during the first round, but he was able to grind for a 6-1, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 victory over Andrey Golubev to start his tournament.

After the scare, Murray went out and scored a rather simple victory over Marinko Matosevic. To be fair, Matosevic entered 1-12 in Grand Slam matches, but many had Murray on upset alert. 

It wasn't meant to be.

Murray needed just one hour and 56 minutes to dispatch his Australian opposition, causing constant frustration throughout, as captured by Piers Newbery of BBC Sport:

It's a clear sign that the Wimbledon champ is back to form and ready to go. In the midst of a tournament that is wholly unpredictable, that's a scary thought.


Roger Federer Scores Win No. 60 with 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 Triumph Over Diego Sebastian Schwartzman

Darko Vojinovic/Associated Press

Win No. 60 at the French Open puts Roger Federer in quite prestigious company, as illustrated by ESPN Stats & Info: 

Oh, and in tandem with Federer's other Grand Slam totals, history has been made. Chiara Gambuzza of Tennis World Italia has the scoop:

Making his first appearance at a major, Diego Sebastian Schwartzman came out aggressive and had the look of someone who could absolutely knock off Federer in the early goings, but the better player quickly recovered, fired four aces and won 81 percent of his first-serve points in the first set alone.

Neither trend changed as Schwartzman stood tough but simply was not talented enough to come close.

Federer will likely have to make his way past both Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal to win the whole thing this year, so a great warm-up match against a player whose game is tailored to clay courts does nothing but help in that pursuit.


Rafael Nadal Trounces Dominic Thiem, 6-2, 6-2, 6-3

Darko Vojinovic/Associated Press

Normally it would not be a shock to hear that Nadal dominated his way through the second round at Roland Garros, but apparently anything is possible this year (just ask the next person on the list), and his opponent was a talented up-and-comer.

But yes, Nadal did emerge in a rather easy fashion with the win over Dominic Thiem, and it is interesting to hear he thinks he could have been more aggressive, per

I won this round, but it was a bit difficult because of the weather, but it was very important for me, because it gave me the opportunity of having two days' break so that I can practise. That's always positive. When you win, you're always happy. Of course, as always, I had ups and downs, and I could have played being a bit more aggressive.

The youngest player in the ATP top 100 was simply erratic and did much to hurt himself throughout, but Nadal continues to play like every match is his last. This was evident while Nadal was up two sets, but down 1-3 in the third—before he rattled off five consecutive games.

Thiem has an extremely bright future, but the event at Roland Garros currently belongs to Nadal.


Garbine Muguruza Destroys Serena Williams, 6-2, 6-2

Darko Vojinovic/Associated Press

Talk about a role reversal.

For a player who entered 0-5 against the top five and 3-8 against the top 10, Garbine Muguruza sure made short work of Serena Williams—in just 64 minutes, to be exact.

If that does not classify as dominant, nothing will.

Darko Vojinovic/Associated Press

Muguruza fired off 12 winners and had just 18 unforced errors in the face of the sport's most dominant figure. In the face of trouble early, Williams had no response. Rinse and repeat throughout the brief affair that in past years would have seen the exact opposite happen.

So what went wrong? No, what went horribly wrong? It's impossible to say for certain, but somebody had to fall on the sword to make the 2014 iteration of the French Open less boring.

But nobody expected Muguruza to wield it.


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