Feuding French - ice cold in Paris to 'girl power'

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Alize Cornet and Caroline Garcia (AP)
Alize Cornet and Caroline Garcia (AP)

Paris - Alize Cornet on Tuesday attempted to roll back on describing her French Open embrace with compatriot Caroline Garcia as the "coldest kiss" she has received, backing her bitter rival to succeed at Roland Garros.

Cornet lost in straight sets to Garcia in the fourth round on Monday in the pair's first meeting since a fallout in April left them barely on speaking terms.

Garcia had infuriated Cornet, as well as fellow French Open quarter-finalist Kristina Mladenovic, by pulling out of a Fed Cup tie at the 11th hour through injury.

Cornet, Mladenovic as well as team-mate Pauline Parmentier then all tweeted 'LOL' simultaneously.

After Monday's match, the two women surprisingly shook hands and embraced, a gesture greeted by huge applause from the Philippe Chatrier crowd.

But Cornet wasn't letting her defeat pass quietly.

"It was the coldest kiss I had in my life," said the 27-year-old after a 6-2, 6-4 loss.

"I was actually also surprised. I was not expecting that she wanted to give me a kiss. And I liked it.

"It was good to finish on this note, I wouldn't have liked like just a handshake, like very cold. I'm not this kind of person. I'm a very nice person. I don't like the conflict.

"So I told her good luck, and I mean it."

On Tuesday, Cornet attempted to further extend the olive branch by tweeting good luck to Garcia and Mladenovic for their quarter-finals.

"Bravo @CaroGarcia et bonne chance pour la suite ainsi qu' @KikiMladenovic ! Girls power," Cornet wrote.

Garcia, who faces Czech second seed Karolina Pliskova on Wednesday for a semi-final spot, said she had been the one to initiate the kiss at the net.

"I was just so happy. I just went for it. I mean, everyone was waiting for a very cold match," said the 23-year-old world number 27.

"Everyone was surprised. I just tried to stay like a professional player. I play tennis because I enjoy it, and I don't want to get any fight with anyone.

"What happen, happened. We never forget about it. Tennis is a game. I play to enjoy and that's it."

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