2016 French Open: The American report

June 6, 2016 01:32 PM

By Jackie Finn, USTA.com

The 2016 French Open was characterized by rain and cool temperatures, but there were many bright spots for American tennis throughout the 15-day tournament.

Looking to defend her 2015 women’s singles title, top-seeded Serena Williams lost only one set en route to this year’s final, where she faced off against rising star Garbine Muguruza. In a match that included superb shot-making from both players, Williams wasn’t able to match the consistency of the tall and hard-hitting Spaniard, who won her first major title, 7-5, 6-4. 

Also advancing to a French Open final were Mike and Bob Bryan, who reached the men’s doubles title match for the second consecutive year before falling to the Spanish pairing of Marc Lopez and Feliciano Lopez. The Bryans forced a third and deciding set after winning the second in a tiebreak, but the hard lefty serve of Feliciano Lopez and clutch net play from the Spaniards carried the day. Still, the Roland Garros runner-up finish, coupled with titles at French Open tune-up events in Rome and Barcelona, pushed the Bryans to No. 1 in the race to the year-end ATP Doubles Finals in London. (The brothers are tied for fourth in the individual doubles rankings.) 

In all, four American women reached the French Open round of 16 and two reached the quarterfinals, the most of any country. Between the men’s and women’s singles tournaments, five American men and women advanced to the round of 16, only one behind Spain’s total of four men and two women.

Included in that group was Madison Keys, whose fourth-round performance registered as a career-best showing at Roland Garros. Venus Williams and John Isner also advanced to the round of 16, with Williams achieving her best result since 2010 and Isner matching his career-best result from 2014.

Still, it was 23-year-old Shelby Rogers (pictured above) who stole the show by reaching the quarterfinals. Besides Serena Williams, she was the first American – man or woman – to reach the quarterfinals since Venus Williams in 2006. Rogers’s run boosted her ranking from No. 108 to No. 60 in the world as she enters the grass-court season. She is now one of a nation-best 14 American women ranked in the Top 100.

Rounding out a successful French Open for American tennis, 14-year-old Amanda Anisimova reached the girls’ singles final, coming up just shy of the title in a 7-5, 7-5 loss to Rebeka Masarova from Switzerland.