French Open 2018: Dominic Thiem vs Alexander Zverev

Alexander Zverev celebrates his five-set victory against Karen Khachanov

Zverev refused to blame his injury on the near 11 hours he had spent on court in his last three rounds against Dusan Lajovic, Damir Dzumhur and Karen Khachanov, each of whom he had beaten after trailing by two sets to one. Up to No3 in the world, he was seeded two in Paris, and touted as a future No1.

He was joined in the men's quarterfinals by Dominic Thiem, his next opponent, and the rejuvenated Novak Djokovic.

He and Zverev were certainly locked in a promising rivalry thus far.

The Austrian, who ended 10-time French Open champion Nadal's streak of 50 consecutive sets won on clay in Madrid, broke decisively for 4-3 in the fourth set with a trademark forehand victor.

"Physically, obviously it's not easy to play, you know, back to back to back five-set matches, but I will manage it somehow". What neither lacked was fight.

Cecchinato - who trailed by two units in his opener - has loved fairly the rise for the reason that finish of April, when he gained the Budapest title as a fortunate loser to assist his rating rise to its present 72nd.

Then in a blur, Zverev won the next four points to give himself a set point - only to miss a smash from near the back of the court. The 13th-seeded Keys has not lost a set at Roland Garros.

Nearly 12 hours altogether so far.

Where is Dominic Thiem vs Alexander Zverev taking place?

There was excitement at the end of the second set too as a marathon game saw Zverev fail to serve it out to level the match, firing long on Khachanov's fifth break point after wasting three set points.

The match had to be postponed until Monday due to unfavorable light conditions, when the two players were tied at 3-3 in the second set. The Austrian offered up a break-back point with a double fault, but compensated with remarkable reactions at the net, threw in another drop/lob combo, and led 3-1.

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The conclusion came swiftly, with Zverev increasingly unable to respond in rallies.

The statistics made bleak reading for Zverev - he finished with 42 unforced errors and just 19 winners.

The Serb, three-times a Wimbledon champion, appeared distraught after his quarter-final defeat by unseeded Marco Cecchinato in which he was treated for neck pain. "I'm very happy about being in the quarterfinals here going the hard way, going the long distance. showing everybody that I can play for as long as I need to".

"He's an incredible player".

"But right now, I mean, Roger and Rafa are dominating, but we are doing everything we can to change that". I think for me it's time to move on to make a great step, because I'm turning 25. "I am not that younger anymore".

"At the Grand Slams, there are the "Big Four".

It was hard to discern which was less likely: that 12-time major champion Novak Djokovic would falter in his French Open quarterfinal or that Marco Cecchinato, who never won a Grand Slam match until last week and once faced a possible ban for losing on goal, would rise to the occasion. "If you're mentally tired, then something is wrong with you", said Zverev, the youngest men's quarterfinalist at the French Open since Juan Martin del Potro in 2009.

He then needed four sets to overcome the talented Greek teenager Stefanos Tsitsipas and also dropped a set against Italy's Matteo Berrettini, winning 6-3 6-7 6-2 6-3. Indeed, his seeding of No. 20 was his lowest at any Grand Slam tournament in a dozen years.

"I always knew how to play on clay, but I think that now I'm just making less stupid mistakes", Thiem, who has won more matches on clay this year than 10-times French Open champion Nadal, told reporters.

"So I hope I'm a little bit more experienced in this one".

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