India’s lone singles participant Ankita Raina will take on 393rd ranked French wildcard Emeline Dartron in the first qualifying round here in Paris. Coming into Roland Garros, the Gujarati-Kashmiri had a confidence boosting week at the WTA 125K clay court event in Florence, Italy, beating 122nd ranked Elina Avanesyan, and running 78th ranked Sara Errani close in a three-setter.
After a disappointing 2022, when she fell to 301 in the WTA Rankings, Raina has boosted her ranking back up to 218, getting closer to her highest ranking of 160. This will be Raina’s first Grand Slam appearance since the 2022 Australian Open, and her fifth appearance overall at Roland Garros.
Her 23 year old French opponent is on her career high WTA ranking of 393, playing her best tennis. It’s never easy to play against a French player at the French Open, with the local crowd getting involved and egging their players on. This match will be a good test for Raina, one that she will hope to pass.
While the order of play has not been released yet, her match will take place either on Monday or on Tuesday. Raina is travelling with her coach Anvit Bendre and has had a couple of practice sessions in already to get acclimatised to the conditions, and will hope to have her game face on whenever she steps on court.