Saturday, 3 June 2017

Rafa easily - Novak escapes

Heading closer to a meeting in the semi finals, Rafa Nadal and Novak Djokovic had the most contrasting third round matches you could ever imagine on Day Six of Roland Garros 2017.
Nadal was incredible, only giving up one game in his slaughter of Nikoloz Basilashvili from Georgia.  His next victim will be fellow Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut, the 17th seed having dispensed of Jiri Vesely.

Djokovic, however, was a break ahead in set one against Argentine Diego Schwartzman, before dropping serve twice and losing the advantage 5-7.  Better news in set two when the second seed pounced in the eighth game to break and then hold for 6-3 and level proceedings.
Schwartzman was still playing the more consistent tennis and Djokovic found himself in deep trouble in set three, unable to convert the four break points given him, but broken once and down two sets to one.

The defending champion dug into his reserves and treated the crowd to some of his magic just in time.  The final sets were completely different, with Serb domination the theme. 6-1 6-1 and Djokovic escaped to reach the round of sixteen where he will play 19th seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas.  Albert also needed to win the final two sets to oust 16th seed Lucas Pouille and disappoint the crowd by sending another French player home.  

Other fourth round matches will see:

Raonic v Carreno Busta
Thiem v Zeballos (Goffin was leading Zeballos but was unfortunately forced out through a freak injury to his ankle thanks to the tarpaulin)

The women's matches were all won by the favourites and as a result fourth round matches will be:

Defending champ Garbine Muguruza v French player Kiki Mladenovic 
Samantha Stosur v Jelena Ostapenko 
Venus Williams v Timea Bacsinszky 

Caroline Wozniacki was in a battle with American teenager Catherine Bellis 6-2 2-5 when play was suspended.

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