T365 Recall: Jelena Ostapenko’s shock 100/1 French Open win in 2017
First Latvian to win a Grand Slam? Check. First unseeded woman to win the French Open in the Open Era? Check. First female to win a maiden title at a Grand Slam? Check.
Jelena Ostapenko certainly rewrote history en route to winning the 2017 French Open.
Roland Garros has a long history when it comes to surprise winners, but no one really saw Ostapenko’s victory coming last year. Heck, the bookies had her as 100/1 outsider, and for good reason.
She went into the tournament without a WTA Tour singles title to her name and was only ranked 47th in the world.
The only hint – and it really was just an inkling – that suggested she was set for a good run was the fact that she arrived in Paris having finished runner-up to Daria Kasatkina on the clay at the Charleston Open.
But that was still not a good enough reason to believe she would go on a magical run at Roland Garros.
She found herself in the top half of the draw with Louise Chirico first up and the American gave her a good workout before going down 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.
Next up was Rio Games gold medallist Monica Puig, but the Puerto Rican was beaten 6-3, 6-2 while Lesia Tsurenko also lost in two sets as the 19-year-old reached the fourth round with 2011 US Open winner Sam Stosur her opponent.
Would youth triumph experience? The answer was yes, but it wasn’t easy as the Australian won the opening set before losing 2-6, 6-2, 6-4.
And suddenly the teenager found herself at the business end of the French Open with Caroline Wozniacki expected to have too much in her locker for the Latvian, but again Ostapenko came from a set down to win 4-6, 6-2, 6-2.
Timea Bacsinszky stood between her and a French Open final and the Swiss also took her to three sets, but she again she bounced book as she celebrated her 20th birthday in style, winning 7-6, (7-4), 3-6, 6-3 to reach her maiden Grand Slam final.
Simona Halep was the clear favourite in the final. The Romanian was after all seeded third and had plenty of years on her opponent.
And during the first two sets it looked like Halep would run away with things as she won the first set 6-4 and had a 3-0 lead in the second, but the aggressive Ostapenko started to settle and stormed back to win the next two sets 6-4, 6-3, and secure her maiden Grand Slam title.
“I still cannot believe it, because it was my dream and now it came true,” she said after the match.
“I think I’m going to only understand that in maybe couple of days or couple of weeks. Five or 10 minutes before the match, I was a little bit nervous, and then again when I was losing the second set. But then I felt I have nothing to lose, so I’m just going to enjoy the match and do my best.”
WATCH: King Richard trailer starring Will Smith as Serena Williams says ‘this should be good’
Nearly time to grab the popcorn for King Richard.
Novak Djokovic closing in on gold at Tokyo Olympics as he admits his ‘level of tennis is getting better and better’
“Best performance of the tournament,” says Djokovic.
Marketa Vondrousova’s dream turns into a reality as she stuns Elina Svitolina to reach final at Olympics
Marketa Vondrousova assured of a medal at the Tokyo Olympics.
‘To have the medal for me is the greatest thing,’ says Belinda Bencic after reaching Olympic singles final
Already assured of one Olympic medal, Belinda Bencic gunning for a second.
‘Pressure is a privilege,’ says Novak Djokovic as he explains why the noise ‘won’t wear me down’
“Without pressure there is no professional sport,” says Novak Djokovic.
Fabio Fognini apologies for shouting homophobic slur during Olympics defeat, says ‘heat went to my head’
“I apologise for the nonsense that came out of me,” wrote Fabio Fognini.
Andy Murray’s emotional message as his Olympic dream dies – now what happens next?
“I feel crushed after today’s loss. Sport can be brutal,” wrote Andy Murray.
Paula Badosa leaves court in a wheelchair while Elena Svitolina headlines Olympic semi-final line-up
Final four confirmed for the Tokyo Games.
Olympic medallist insists Novak Djokovic is not under pressure to win gold at Tokyo Games
Novak Djokovic should not put pressure on himself to win at Tokyo Games.
Underarm serves and tweeners as Nick Kyrgios returns with a bang as he wins Atlanta opener
An entertaining return to action from Nick Kyrgios.