Sharapova, Muguruza reach fourth round at French Open

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PARIS — Former champion Maria Sharapova reached the fourth round of the French Open with a dominant 6-2, 6-1 win against Karolina Pliskova on Saturday.

The 31-year-old Russian, seeded 28th after missing this tournament the last two years, needed 59 minutes to win on Court Philippe Chatrier. She broke serve five times against the sixth-seeded Czech.

Sharapova, who has won two of her five majors at Roland Garros, will next face Serena Williams in what will be their 22nd career meeting.

Third-seeded Garbine Muguruza, the 2016 French Open champion, also impressed on the main court. She needed just over one hour to beat Samantha Stosur of Australia 6-0, 6-2.

Sloane Stephens also advanced to the fourth round, but the 10th-seeded American had a much more difficult time beating Italy’s Camila Giorgi 4-6, 6-1, 8-6. Stephens next faces Anett Kontaveit of Estonia, who won 7-6 (8), 7-6 (4) against No. 8-seeded Petra Kvitova.

There was another upset as unseeded Ukrainian Lesia Tsurenko defeated 19th-seeded Slovak Magdalena Rybarikova 6-2, 6-4.

Top-seeded Simona Halep later faced Andrea Petkovic of Germany on the new Court 18.

In men’s third-round action, unseeded Russian Karen Khachanov completed a 6-3, 5-7, 6-3 win against 15th-seeded Lucas Pouille of France. Their match was suspended for rain late Friday.

Fabio Fognini beat Kyle Edmund 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4, while Maximilian Marterer won 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 against Jurgen Zopp.

Rafael Nadal was up later on Chatrier, targeting a 16th consecutive win against Richard Gasquet. The top-ranked Spaniard is trying to win a record-extending 11th title at Roland Garros.

Benedetti wins 12th stage; Polanc takes Giro lead

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PINEROLO, Italy (AP) Cesare Benedetti won the 12th stage of the Giro d’Italia on Thursday for his first victory as a professional while Jan Polanc took the overall leader’s pink jersey from UAE Emirates teammate Valerio Conti.

Benedetti, an Italian with the Bora team who has been a support rider for his entire career, was part of an early breakaway then accelerated from a select group of riders in a sprint finish.

“I’ve worked a lot for the others in the past but today I got my opportunity,” Benedetti said. “I’m not (usually) a winner.”

Benedetti required 3 hours, 41 minutes to complete the 158-kilometer (98-mile) leg from Cuneo to Pinerolo, which featured one major climb and another shorter but steeper ascent just before the finish.

Damiano Caruso crossed second and Eddie Dunbar came third, each with the same time as Benedetti. Polanc, a Slovenian who was also in the breakaway, finished 25 seconds behind.

In the overall standings, Polanc leads Primoz Roglic by 4 minutes, 7 seconds. Vincenzo Nibali, one of the pre-race favorites, is fifth overall, 5:51 behind.

“It was a team tactic that I would go in the breakaway so we could have a better control over the race,” Polanc said. “It was also a way to keep the pink jersey in the team.”

Mikel Landa and Miguel Angel Lopez attacked on the first-category climb to Montoso and gained about 30 seconds on the other overall favorites.

Before the stage began, sprinters Caleb Ewan and Elia Viviani withdrew from the race. Ewan won two stages, including the 11th leg a day earlier, while Viviani posted three second-place finishes.

Stage 13 on Friday is one of the race’s toughest, with two category one climbs and one category ascent, along with an uphill finish at the end of the 196-kilometer leg from Pinerolo to Ceresole Reale.

The Giro ends June 2 in Verona.

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Tsonga rallies past qualifier to reach quarterfinals in Lyon

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LYON, France (AP) Former champion Jo-Wilfried Tsonga rallied past Canadian qualifier Steven Diez on Wednesday to reach the quarterfinals and extend his perfect record at the Lyon Open.

Tsonga, the 2017 champion, came within two points of losing but finally prevailed 3-6, 7-6 (2), 6-3 on his sixth match point after 2 hours, 42 minutes.

The clay-court event serves as a warmup for the French Open, which starts Sunday in Paris.

“It was good for me to play a long match like this,” Tsonga said. “I haven’t played a match this long for a while. I am not playing my best level, but I am giving everything mentally and that gives me confidence.”

Tsonga will next take on top-seeded Nikoloz Basilashvili, who beat lucky loser Tristan Lamasine 7-5, 7-5.

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