Live Commentary: French Open – Women's final: Maria Sharapova vs. Sara Errani

Maria Sharapova
© PA Photos
Sports Mole brings you live updates from the French Open women's final between Maria Sharapova and Sara Errani at Roland Garros.

Good afternoon and welcome to Sports Mole's live coverage of the women's final of the French Open between Maria Sharapova and Sara Errani at Roland Garros.

Sharapova is already guaranteed to be the new world number one when the rankings are released on Monday. However, a win for the Russian on clay would silence her doubters this season.

Meanwhile, Errani entered the tournament ranked number 24 in the world, with nothing but a quarter-final appearance at the Australian Open on her CV.

The Italian is searching to make it a double in Paris having already secured the women's doubles trophy with her partner Roberta Vinci.

Should the 25-year-old overcome Sharapova, she will become the first women to do the double in Paris since Mary Pierce in 2000.

Note that play gets underway at 2pm.


16.02That's just about me for today. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for the action. Join me again tomorrow for the men's final between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal. Goodbye!

16.00Sharapova also thanks her team and family for keeping her going through her injured spell. Nice touch that.

15.59A word from Sharapova: "Sara what an amazing tournament. The way you have performed was extremely difficult, I hope we get to play many more times."

15.56A word from Errani: "I just want to say congratulations to Maria for the tournament, you play a good match. I want to thank all the people that are here today."

15.56Sharapova smiles proudly as the Russian national anthem is played.

15.54Our full report of the match can be found here.

15.53Here comes Sharapova. She proudly lifts the trophy above her head. The Russian deserves this trophy. Great scenes in Paris.

15.51Confusion here as Errani is announced as the winner! Wonderful spirit from the Italian as she manages a smile. She has done herself proud as she collects her trophy.

15.49Here comes the wonderful trophy...

15.48It is also her first major title since 2008.

15.47That's the career Grand Slam. She's now won the French, the US and Aussie Opens, plus Wimbledon.

15.47So not only has the Russian claimed the trophy. She is the new world number one. Not a bad two weeks!

15.44The presentation is moments away.

15.44Poor old Errani. The Italian just could not get into this match. Sharapova served so well throughout, and proved far too strong for Errani who will certainly take plenty from this tournament.

15.42Maria Sharapova wins the 2012 women's French Open.

15.42RESULT: Sharapova 6-3 6-2 Errani

15.42This time she does get it! Sharapova wins the French Open!

15.42Ace number six! Another championship point...

15.42But again Errani produces an identical drop shop to level it at deuce. Unreal!

15.40Ace! Championship point number two...

15.40Another thunderous effort from Sharapova, however, as she levels it at 40-40.

15.39It's another wonderful drop shot from Errani as she moves advantage ahead. Inspiring from the Italian.

15.38But it's just long! We are back at deuce.

15.37Oh my my my. What defence from Sharapova and she finishes it off with a wonderful forehand down the line. Championship point.

15.35Errani moves level at 30-30 with a wonderful drop shot.

15.35Again it's long from Errani as she comes to the net. The Russian is just two points away.

15.34Just wide from Errani as she continues to battle. We sit at 15-15.

15.32Here we go then. Sharapova will serve for the championship.

15.32But the second one is right on the money. Sharapova breaks to lead 5-2 in the second. She will serve for the match.

15.32She fires the first one wide.

15.32Three break points for Sharapova.

15.32But it could count for nothing. Errani fires long to hand Sharapova a 0-30 lead.

15.30Well played Sara Errani. The Italian breaks back to cut the score to 2-4 in the second.

15.30Wow. Who saw that coming? Errani meets the wide serve to send a forehand winner down the line. The Italian leads 30-40.

15.28Another double fault for Sharapova as Errani moves level at 30-30.

15.26Just too good from Sharapova as she comes to the net to stroke it into the deuce court. She leads 15-0 on serve. That's now 16 forehand winners for the Russian.

15.24Break! It's a bold move from Errani as she comes to the net. However, Sharapova has danced this dance before and she secures the point to lead 4-1.

15.22Again it's long from Sharapova as we move to deuce for what seems like the 100th time.

15.22Sharapova hooks it wide, however. And we sit at 40-40 once more.

15.20So so good from Sharapova as she sends a forehand winner down the line. It ranges from awful to sensational for the Russian.

15.20Sharapova jumps all over the Errani serve to send it straight back where it came from.

15.19Another error from Sharapova, however, as Errani takes a 40-30 lead.

15.17Make that 15-30. Just a wonderful passing shot from Errani.

15.17Errani's in trouble here. The Italian is 0-30 down on serve at 1-3.

15.15Sharapova does hold. The Russian leads 3-1 in the second.

15.13More great stuff from Sharapova as she races to the net to produce a fine passing shot. She leads advantage.

15.13Superb from Sharapova as she staves off a break point to level it at deuce once more.

15.12Twice Sharapova hits the net to allow Errani back into this one at 40-40.

15.10How well has Sharapova served in this match? Granted, she has hit four doubles. But her first serves have been brilliant.

15.08It certainly feels like a more even match now. But you just wonder whether Errani can turn this one around from a set down.

15.06Errani manages to hold, however, as Sharapova fires long. 2-1 in the second.

15.06From 40-0 to deuce as Sharapova eyes another break.

15.04What was Sharapova doing there? The Russian had a simple passing shot at the net, but fed it straight into her opponent.

15.04A little shout and skip from Errani as she moves 15-0 ahead in the third game of the second set.

15.02Just too good from Sharapova as she comes out unscathed to move 2-0 ahead in the second.

15.00However, a brilliant ace sends her advantage ahead.

15.00Sharapova passes up the chance to hold as she hits the net. Deuce.

14.59A word from Times tennis correspondent Neil Harman: "There was a sense of inevitability after the first four games went very quickly. But after that Errani showed she is definitely back in this match. The second set should be a mighty tight contest."

14.59Again it's a super serve from Sharapova as she moves 30-15 ahead. She has really settled into this match.

14.57However, Errani reminds us she is still here with a wonderful approach shot. 15-15.

14.57Again Sharapova gets depth on her defensive strike to push Errani right onto the base line.

14.55There's the break. Such a fine start to the second set. The Russian moves 1-0 ahead. However, the clouds are not looking too clever.

14.53Just so good from Sharapova as she moves 0-40 ahead in the opening game of the second with a tremendous forehand.

14.51Just 36 minutes it took for Sharapova to claim that opening set.

14.49SET! Just fantastic from Sharapova as she claims the opening set 6-3. I can't see a way back for Errani.

14.48Biggest roar of the match as Errani strikes from nowhere to level it at 30-30. Two big points coming up.

14.48But then what do I know? Brilliant serve from Sharapova as she moves 30-15 ahead.

14.46Not great serving from Sharapova thus far as she serves up her fourth double of the match. 15-15.

14.45Strong hold from Errani as she moves 5-3 behind the Russian. However, Sharapova will now serve for the opening set.

14.42However, it's brilliant from Errani as she levels it at deuce with a powerful forehand.

14.42Two set points for Sharapova as Errani fires wide.

14.40It's much better from Errani. However, has she left it too late to save this opening set?

14.38Normal service is resumed as Sharapova holds to love to move 5-2 ahead.

14.36Best shot of the match from Sharapova as she fires a forehand straight onto the line. If she plays like that, she will win. It's as simple as that.

14.34Poor from Sharapova as Errani holds serve to move 4-2 behind. Two games on the spin for the Italian.

14.34Best rally of the match as Sharapova cuts the score to 40-15 with a brilliant passing shot.

14.32Suddenly Errani bursts onto the scene with a sensational drop shot to move 15-0 ahead. She has given herself a chance in this first set.

14.30Sharapova's missed it. Errani breaks to move 1-4 behind. That is just what the doctor ordered.

14.30Sharapova staves off the first as Errani fires wide. Two more.

14.30But what do we have here? Errani has three break points.

14.2810 winners from Sharapova thus far. None from Errani.

14.28Sharapova breaks once more to move 4-0 ahead in the opening set. We have played just 14 minutes.

14.26It's better from Errani as she pushes Sharapova deeper with each shot. We sit at deuce.

14.26Just a hint for Errani as Sharapova fires long. However, the Russian still has a break point.

14.26Wow. Such a wonderful strike from Sharapova as she fires a backhand onto the line. 15-40.

14.24Sharapova just keeping it simple in the early stages - waiting for the Errani mistake.

14.24That's some power from Sharapova as she releases a powerful forehand to move level at 15-15.

14.22Extremely strange atmosphere at the beginning of this match. It's almost as if the crowd are waiting for Errani to produce something.

14.22And just like that Sharapova holds her serve to love to move 3-0 ahead. It's all been too easy thus far.

14.20Simply too good from Sharapova as she moves 30-0 ahead on serve at 2-0.

14.20Coming into Roland Garros this year, Errani was 0-28 against opponents in the top 10. She has improved in this tournament, but on paper there is only one winner.

14.20Sharapova does indeed move a break ahead after just six minutes of play. The Russian looks in the mood in the early stages.

14.18A word from Roland Garros on Twitter: "Errani has recorded almost 2hrs more court time than Sharapova at #RG12. Errani has played six 90minute-plus matches, Sharapova only one."

14.16It is understood that Errani is using a longer racket for this match. However, thus far Sharapova is dominating. Break point.

14.14Sharapova says no as she releases a powerful ace to move 1-0 ahead. Strong start from the Russian.

14.12One thing that has been apparent this year is the amount of women's tennis games which have included a vast amount of breaks of serve. Will we have that today?

14.09Here we go then. The serves have been practiced. We are underway.

14.06The height difference between these two players really is extreme.

14.02Both players are emerging onto the court. Errani looks as focused as I have ever seen her. As expected.

14.00Sharapova has a nine-inch height advantage over Errani. Will the Russian make use of it this afternoon?

13.58More from Errani: "I have no words to describe how I feel - amazing, incredible. I didn't believe this was possible. But the tournament is not over and hopefully I can still do something."

13.55Just a reminder that we will also bring you the men's French Open final between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic tomorrow. Just a small one really. No big deal.

13.55A word from tennis coach and commentator Brad Gilbert on Twitter: "Got a feeling Errani's dream run will come to a screaching halt, the serve will be batting practice for Shaza."

13.53The good news is that the weather is holding up nicely in Paris this afternoon. We have little wind, and clear sky. Perfect for a game of tennis!

13.51A word from Greg Rusedski, former British number one on Twitter: "Sharapova got to be favourite today and conditions good in Paris which helps her. Hopefully no stage fright for Errani, first GS final."

13.48The Italian does have form on clay, however, she won 16 straight matches on clay earlier this year. She will also have less pressure on her shoulders and could spring the most unlikely of surprises.

13.45Meanwhile, Errani is making her Grand Slam debut. Just twice has the women's singles title at Roland Garros been won by a player not seeded inside the top 10.

13.42The stats are certainly in the Russian's favour this afternoon. She has won her last 15 matches on clay and has won a total of five clay titles. The soon-to-be world number one has also dropped just one set in the tournament thus far.

13.39Roland Garros is the only Grand Slam title missing from Sharapova's CV and she is bidding to be become the tenth women to complete a career Grand Slam.

13.36Meanwhile, Sharapova stated: "To be in a Roland Garros final for the first time is a great achievement. I've always believed and have always worked towards it, but I didn't know if I was really ever quite ready for it physically. So to be at this stage here for the first time, 25 years old, is really just a great personal achievement."

13.36Following Errani's win over Stosur. The Italian told reporters: "I didn't think I could do this coming into the tournament. Never. This is just incredible for me. The first round here was difficult, this match was difficult, all the matches have been difficult, and I'm very happy how I've played."

13.33Errani overcame Casey Deilacqua, Melanie Oudin, Ana Ivanovic, Svetlana Kuznetsova, and Angelique Kerber on her way to the semi-finals. Meanwhile, she beat number six seed Sam Stosur in three sets to reach the final.

13.30Sharapova overcame Alexandra Cadantu, Ayumi Morita, Shuai Peng on her way to the round of 16. The Russian then had a tough test against Klara Zakopalova, before beating Kaia Kanepi and Petra Kvitova on her way to the final.


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