Sorana Cirstea made the French Open second round on Sunday with a little help from 2001 Wimbledon winner Goran Ivanisevic, the coach of world number one and reigning Roland Garros champion Novak Djokovic.
The 32-year-old Romanian, who reached the quarter-finals in Paris in 2009, eased past Tatjana Maria 6-3, 6-3 to set up a clash with former US Open champion Sloane Stephens for a place in the last 32.
Cirstea said she had enjoyed taking on board tips from Ivanisevic whose main job is to steer Djokovic to a 21st Grand Slam title.
“I just asked for his help and I was lucky enough to get an hour of his time at practice two days ago. I talked with him a little bit about what’s going through my head and just tennis talk,” said 26th seed Cirstea.
“And today I was very surprised to see him because I know he’s very busy with Novak. He’s just been giving me a few tips and tricks from a Grand Slam champion, and as a coach of No. 1, and someone that has so much experience.”