Paris, France (4E Sports) – Kristina Mladenovic knocked out second seed and Australian Open champion Li Na, 7-5, 3-6, 6-1, Tuesday in the opening round of the French Open.
Li committed 37 unforced errors to become the first reigning women’s Australian Open champion to lose in the first round at Roland Garros since Lindsay Davenport in 2000.
It was the third straight early exit at Roland Garros for Li, who lost in the fourth round as the defending champ in 2012 and fell in the second round last year.
Other than her championship run in 2011, Li has never been past the fourth round in seven other French Open appearances, including Tuesday’s ouster.
This marked the first time in history that both the men’s and women’s Grand Slam singles champions have lost in the first round at the next major. Earlier, men’s Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka was eliminated in the first round.
Fourth seed Simona Halep had no trouble advancing, beating Alisa Kleybanova, 6-0, 6-2; sixth seed Jelena Jankovic overcame Sharon Fichman, 5-7, 6-1, 6-3; while 10th seed Sara Errani downed Madison Keys, 7-5, 3-6, 6-1.
Other winners were Ana Ivanovic, Yanina Wickmayer, Sloane Stephens, Kirsten Flipkens, Ekaterina Makarova, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Sorana Cirstea, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Maria-Teresa Torro-Flor.
Also advancing were Heather Watson, Camila Giorgi, Casey Dellacqua, Silvia Soler-Espinosa, Coco Vandeweghe and Alison Riske.
On the men’s side, Ivo Karlovic hit 22 aces as stunned No. 11 seed Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 7-5, 7-6(4) in just under two hours.
Meanwhile, fifth seed David Ferrer reached the second round for the 12th straight year with a 6-4, 6-3, 6-1 win over Igor Sijsling.
Seventh seed Andy Murray made a triumphant return to Roland Garros after beating Andrey Golubev, 6-1, 6-4, 3-6, 6-2, in the first round. Last year, Murray missed the Grand Slam championship due to injury.
Murray will next play Australian Marinko Matosevic, who recorded his first Grand Slam victory on his 13th try by defeating Dustin Brown 7-6(5), 6-4, 6-7(1), 7-5. Matosevic won the final six games of the match.
Other winners were Philipp Kohlschreiber, Richard Gasquet, Carlos Berlocq, Gael Monfils, Fernando Verdasco, Jurgen Zopp, Kevin Anderson,Jack Sock, Andreas Seppi, Juan Monaco, Simone Bolelli,
Dusan Lajovic, Andreas Haider-Maurer, Axel Michon, Denis Istomin, Jan-Lennard Struff and Pablo Cuevas.