When and where: The women's semi-finals at Roland Garros begin at 8 a.m. ET on Thursday. Live coverage will be on ESPN2, with a live stream available on ESPN3.
Preview: The French Open is down to the final four with the lineup for the women's final set to be decided on Thursday. Though both matches have their intrigue, it is Maria Sharapova's clash with Petra Kvitova that represents the heavyweight duel of the semifinals.
The matchup is, of course, a repeat of last year's Wimbledon final in which Kvitova stunned her more illustrious opponent to claim her maiden grand slam title. Sharapova has attained a modicum of revenge this year, though, coming out on top in the Australian Open semi-finals and notably when the pair last met on the clay of Stuttgart at the end of April.
Both players couldn't have wished for kinder draws to reach this stage of the event, with neither woman yet to face a player ranked inside the top 20. Sharapova has looked the most impressive so far, dropping just the one set in a tiebreak to Klara Zakopalova in the last 16. Kvitova, meanwhile, was staring down the barrel of a quarter-final exit to Yaroslava Shvedova at 4-2 down in the final set on Wednesday, before rallying to claim it 6-4.
Neither player has yet tasted a French Open final, though Sharapova has twice been a semi-final loser. And the second seed will have another huge incentive to win her 14th grand slam semifinal, with victory taking her back to number one in the WTA rankings for the first time since prior her shoulder surgery four years ago.
It promises to be a closely contested matchup with relentless power coming both from both ends of the court. But Sharapova looks to have the bit between her teeth as she aims to complete her career Grand Slam in Paris.
On paper, the day's first contest appears easier to call. Australian Sam Stosur, the current US Open champion and sixth seed will be strongly fancied to end the dream run of Italian Sara Errani.
But, while Errani is a fresh face in the final four of a grand slam, she is not without pedigree. Particularly on clay. The 21st seed has already claimed three titles on the dirt this year, a feat which has seen her soar more than 20 places in the rankings since the start of the year.
Last time out, in Rome, however, Errani came up short in the second round, to the woman who she will once again face off with on Thursday.
Having yet to relinquish a set at Roland Garros thus far, it is Stosur who should once again be celebrating reaching her second French Open final in three years.