PARIS - Serena Williams was sure the ball went off her opponent's arm, a no-no in tennis. The opponent, Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez, insisted the ball went off her racket.
Williams, the No. 2 seed, accused Martinez Sanchez of "cheating." Martinez Sanchez thought that was a "stupid" thing for Williams to say.
Then consider that the point in question helped Martinez Sanchez win the first set of their French Open match yesterday. Oh, and that Williams had a coughing fit during a third-set changeover. All in all, what eventually became a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 victory for Williams stands as the latest example of the athlete/actress' penchant for theatrics.
"I'm, like, drama. And I don't want to be drama," a hoarse Williams said, straining to get the words out.
"I'm like one of those girls on a reality show that has all the drama, and everyone in the house hates them because no matter what they do, like, drama follows them. I don't want to be that girl."
On the men's side, Andy Roddick reached the fourth round for the first time by beating Marc Gicquel of France, 6-1, 6-4, 6-4.
But while Williams and Roddick managed to stick around, Novak Djokovic became the first big-name player to be eliminated from the men's side.
Djokovic lost to No. 29 Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4, in the third round yesterday.
The fourth-seeded Djokovic reached the semifinals at Roland Garros in each of the last two years, but could do little against Kohlschreiber while playing for the third time in three days.
"What is disappointing was that I couldn't find the rhythm throughout the whole match," Djokovic said.
Second-seeded Roger Federer and No. 5 Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina also reached the fourth round, as did No. 5 Jelena Jankovic.
Roddick is only the second American to advance this far at the clay-court major since Andre Agassi in 2003, the same year Roddick won the U.S. Open. Robby Ginepri also made the fourth round in Paris last year.
"It's three matches," said Roddick, who had seven aces and only 11 unforced errors. "It's a lot better than I've done here before."