Each day of Roland Garros Baseline will highlight one player's efforts for a job well done.

In the midst of a six-match losing streak, not many people were giving Steve Johnson a chance when analyzing his first-round matchup with countryman Frances Tiafoe. Down two sets to none, it looked as if the Southern California native was headed for his seventh straight loss.

But Johnson and his ultra-effective kickserve had other plans. Seemingly out of nowhere, the 31-year-old flipped the match upside down and stormed to a 6-7(5), 3-6, 6-4, 6-2, 6-1, victory.


The American's outstanding comeback victory gave him his first main draw victory on the terre battue since 2018. Maybe playing someone not named Roberto had something to do with his success this time around? Last year, Johnson fell to Roberto Carballes Baena in straight sets and in 2019 Roberto Bautista Agut got the best of him on the dirt.

It was a much needed win for one of the greatest men’s collegiate tennis players in history. Johnson will face Brazilian left-hander Thiago Monteiro in the second round on Wednesday.