Maria Sharapova tipped to win but Serena Williams will want final say | Kevin Mitchell

The rivalry other sports crave will step up another notch at the French Open with the Russian determined to end her run of 18 defeats and the American motivated by Sharapova’s inflammatory book

Thunder and lightning are expected to light up Court Philippe Chatrier on Monday, and that’s only the weather forecast. After the deluge of words that accompanied the most anticipated collision of this French Open there is a gathering conviction here that Maria Sharapova will emerge from her fourth-round match on Monday celebrating her first win over Serena Williams in 19 matches, leavened only by the obligatory nod of consolation.

Related: Serena Williams blasts Maria Sharapova over book ‘hearsay’ as showdown looms

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