Mary Pierce was the last player from France to win one of the singles titles at their home Slam but with no Serena Williams or Maria Sharapova in the draw and other leading contenders nursing injuries, Mladenovic will feel there is an opening which could pave the way for a huge success.
Expectations have risen - and her odds have shortened - following an impressive clay season so far which has seen her reach the finals in both Stuttgart (where she beat Sharapova before losing to Laura Siegemund) and Madrid (beat Svetlana Kuznetsova, lost to Simona Halep). Those runs followed her maiden WTA title in St Petersburg (on a hardcourt).
In theory, the clay does not suit the 6ft star's big-serving game - she lists her favourite surface as grass - but it has not held her back so far in 2017.
Kiki comes from a sporting family with her mother Dzenita a professional volleyball player and father Dragan a handball star.