Dominic Thiem Battles Past Djokovic In Two Day Epic To Reach Roland Garros Final - UBITENNIS
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Dominic Thiem Battles Past Djokovic In Two Day Epic To Reach Roland Garros Final

Dominic Thiem battled past Novak Djokovic in over four hours to reach his second Roland Garros final.

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Dominic Thiem (@ATP_Tour - Twitter)

Dominic Thiem battled past Novak Djokovic 6-2 3-6 7-5 5-7 7-5 to reach his second consecutive Roland Garros final. 

 

The Austrian overcame wind, rain delays and the world number one Novak Djokovic to reach his second consecutive Roland Garros final.

As they entered the second day at a set all and a 3-1 lead to Thiem, the Austrian had to battle and claw his way to yet another final against Rafael Nadal.

Meanwhile for Novak Djokovic, his quest for more history ends in heart-breaking fashion as he is still yet to reach the final since 2016.

After the resumption, it was Djokovic who returned the better player as he liked the less windier conditions dictating play from his return game.

After failing to break in his first return game, the Serbian wouldn’t waste his second opportunity as he got the break back that he conceded yesterday.

As for the Austrian his level was as good as yesterday but struggled with his shot selection which meant that he was conceding a lot of points on serve.

However there is a reason why Thiem had reached the semi-finals at Roland Garros for four years in a row and he used his kick serve to prevent the surge from Djokovic.

The fourth seed also needed a stroke of luck as two shanked smashes and a net cord winner prevented a two set to one deficit.

Luck is earned though and last year’s finalist finally decided to press the Serb on serve and make him pay for his serve and volleying tactics.

Even though he seemed passive on some of the set points, Thiem trusted his backhand and used it to good effect to convert his fourth set point as he took the third set 7-5.

The fourth set saw Djokovic more switched on tactically as he started to be more aggressive and force the world number four backwards.

Both men shared breaks at the start of the set as Djokovic drew first blood before a lucky net cord lob winner sealed the break back for the Austrian.

https://twitter.com/Eurosport_UK/status/1137318444465119232

A terrible game from Thiem saw a break to love for the world number one as he finally broke returning against the wind in a huge momentum shift.

Eventually though, the Serb had to serve against the wind and struggled to get a grip of his ball toss as he gave away the break in quick fashion.

Some weird tactical returning cost Thiem towards the end of the set as he missed the opportunity to break for the match and as a consequence was made to pay for it.

A double fault saw Djokovic get the crucial break in the 11th game and seal the set 7-5 to force a fifth set in this high-quality affair.

Both men started the deciding set by saving break points as there were candidates for shot of the tournament with both players raising the level.

However it was Thiem who struck the first blow as the Serb once again struggled to serve against the wind and land the fatal blow.

The Austrian was playing with freedom and confidence as he moved Djokovic around the court with hard-hitting shots as he established a 4-1 lead.

After a 20 minute rain delay, the world number one prevented a double break deficit and broke back as the drama continued.

There were another couple of breaks as Djokovic got nervy and Thiem was too passive on his two match points as he couldn’t close the match out.

In the end though it was the Austrian, who struck a deadly forehand to seal victory in a four hour and two day battle as he reached his second consecutive final.

It wasn’t to be for Djokovic, who’s 26 match winning streak at grand slams comes to an end in an epic loss to a mentally stronger Thiem.

In a bizarre match, Thiem gets the win and next up for him is Rafael Nadal in less than 24 hours time on Sunday afternoon.

 

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Svetlana Kuznetsova upsets Ashleigh Barty in Cincinnati to reach the 42nd final of her career

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Russian wild card Svetlana Kuznetsova edged top seed this year’s Roland Garros champion Ashleigh Barty 6-2 6-4 in the semifinal of the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati to reach the 42nd final of her career.

 

Two-time Grand Slam champion Kuznetsova, who is now ranked world number 153, scored her third win against top 10 players this week  after beating former US Open champion Sloane Stephens and Karolina Pliskova.

Barty missed her chance to regain world number 1 spot from Naomi Osaka, who was forced to retire from her quarter final.

Barty earned the first break of the match in the second game of the opening set, when Kuznetsova netted a backhand. Kuznetsova broke back in the third game with a smash winner and earned another break at 2-2 when Barty netted a backhand. Kuznetsova hit a return winner to build up a 5-2 lead. Barty asked a medical time-out to treat he right leg. Kuznetsova held serve at 15 to close out the opening set after 30 minutes.

Kuznetsova went up a break in the first game of the second set. Barty won just three points on return in the second set. Kuznetsova closed out the second set with three winners in the 10th game.

“I am really happy. I am not really an analyzing person, but on my intuition, I am doing so much better, not repeating so many of my mistakes, just playing smarter and wiser now. It’s been so many different things when I was off, so I just enjoyed time off. Honestly, I was not missing at all the travelling and all the stress when you play tournaments, but now I have missed it and I feel good. I feel joy staying here and being here. It definitely helped me to have some time off to see other things outside tennis”, said Kuznetsova.

 

Kuznetsova set up a final against Madison Keys, who beat Sofia Kenin in straight sets. The Russian 34-year-old veteran player has qualified for her first final since last year, when she beat Donna Vekic in Washington.

 

“Madison is extremely tough. When she is on fire, it is really hard to play against her. It’s going to be a difficult match-up”, said Kuznetsova.  

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David Goffin reaches his first Masters 1000 in Cincinnati

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David Goffin beat Richard Gasquet 6-3 6-4 on an overcast afternoon to reach the first Masters 1000 final of his career and his 13th title match at ATP Tour level at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati. Goffin has dropped just one set en route to the final.

 

Goffin is returning to his best form this summer under the guidance of former Swedish player Thomas Johansson. He reached the final in Halle and his first quarter final at Wimbledon. He received a walkover after Yoshihito Nishioka was forced to withdraw from the match due to food poisoning.

The Belgian player started the match with two consecutive holds before breaking at love to open up a 4-1 lead with a backhand winner down the line.

Goffin held his next service games to seal the opening set 6-3. Gasquet earned an early break to open  2-0 lead, but Goffin won five of the next six games with two breaks. The 2017 Nitto ATP Finals runner-up served out the win at love in the 10th game after 1 hour and 16 minutes, as Gasquet sent his backhand long.

Goffin reached the semifinal in Cincinnati last year, but he was forced to retire due to an arm injury.

“I am very happy. It’s a tournament I like and I have played the best tennis in the past few years. I am really happy to reach my first Masters 1000 final here. It’s a great moment for me.”

 

 

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Richard Gasquet reaches his first Masters 1000 semifinal since Miami 2013

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Frenchman Richard Gasquet edged past this year’s Wimbledon semifinalist Roberto Bautista Agut 7-6 (7-2) 3-6 6-2 after 2 hours and 12 minutes to reach his first Masters 1000 semifinal since the 2013 Miami Open.

 

 Gasquet missed six months of action after undergoing groin surgery last January.

The French player set up a semfinal against David Goffin, who reached the semifinal after his Japanese opponent Yoshihito Nishioka withdrew from the match due to illness.

The first set went on serve with no break points en route to the tie-break. Bautista Agut hit a backhand wide at 1-2. Gasquet sealed the tie-break when Bautista Agut hit a forehand long.

Bautista Agut earned two breaks of serve in the second set and sealed it, when Gasquet made his third double fault on set point.

Gasquet broke serve with a volley in the third game of the decisive set. The French player went up a double break to race out to 4-1 lead. He saved two break points to hold his serve at deuce before serving out the third set on his first match point.

“I know how tough it was to come back. I know the moments I had at the start of the year, so I just wanted to enjoy, to fight. It is not easy to come back after six months out, but I am here. I am in semis tomorrow”,said Gasquet.

 

 

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