On Court Philippe Chatrier, the 23-year-old Pole didn’t look anything like the player who overwhelmed Williams in straight sets.
“She was just playing very aggressive on both sides,” Radwanska said. “She just had (an) answer for everything I was trying to do.”
Radwanska has been having a stellar year, winning three titles and moving up to a career-high No. 3 ranking last month. But she is the only player in the top 10 who has never reached a Grand Slam semifinal.
“It’s always disappointing when losing in the first week of a Grand Slam, that’s for sure,” Radwanska said. “Today I didn’t play bad, she was just playing unbelievable.”
Against Kuznetsova, however, Radwanska has struggled. She is 3-10 against the Russian, including her only two losses in tournament finals.
Before Friday’s match, Radwanska had been 38-7 in 2012, with six of those losses coming against top-ranked Victoria Azarenka.
Kuznetsova, who also won the U.S. Open in 2004, has struggled since winning the title at Roland Garros three years ago, reaching only one Grand Slam quarterfinal.
“I try to play more forehands. I try to dictate. I play more speed,” Kuznetsova said. “This is the game I was playing when I won U.S. Open and I won the French Open.”
Three days after scoring a “double bagel” in the first round, the second-seeded Sharapova defeated Ayumi Morita of Japan 6-1, 6-1.
“I really wanted to try to get her on the move. I thought I played well, aggressive, moved in when I had to,” Sharapova said. “With every round I’m going to be playing tougher opponents, and that’s when you really want to kind of step it up and raise your level. That’s what I’ll try to do in the next round.”
Sharapova has won three major titles but needs the French to complete a career Grand Slam. Last year, she lost in the semifinals.
Also in the third round, the 13th-seeded Ivanovic lost to Sara Errani of Italy 1-6, 7-5, 6-3. It was only the second time in 39 matches that Errani has beaten a player ranked in the top 15.
Ivanovic, once ranked No. 1, committed 37 of her 40 unforced errors in the final two sets. Errani had only 18.
“In the third set I was creating a lot of opportunities and missing a lot of easy, easy finishing balls,” Ivanovic said. “That’s something that I’m not really happy about.”