Novak Djokovic Knocked Out of French Open, Nadal Cruises

Lynette Rowe
June 9, 2017

Thiem, also a semifinalist at Roland Garros past year, is coming off a straight-set upset of defending champion Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals.

It also piled the pressure back onto the 12-time Grand Slam victor to prove that he is still a contender at the majors following a second-round exit at the Australian Open in January. "Now I beat Novak. In the finals there is another top star". It was measured at 76 miles per hour (122 kph), faster than the average of top-ranked men's player Andy Murray.

Meanwhile, there was drama in the women's quarterfinals, as third-seed Simona Halep rallied from a 5-1 second-set deficit and saved a match point to overcome fifth-seed Elina Svitolina 3-6 7-6 (8-6) 6-0. Pliskova beat Caroline Garcia 7-6 (3), 6-4.

Thiem caused the upset of the tournament on Wednesday when he knocked defending champion Novak Djokovic out in straight sets to line up a last-four clash with the "King of Clay". It's only the second time Djokovic lost a final set by the score of 6-0 in his 937 career tour-level matches. "Just pretty bad set".

Decisive in the match was a long first set during the start of the party, Djokovic missed out on a double break-point and lost the tiebreak.

"He's obviously played extremely well the last few years at the French, and he's confident". Thiem erased the first with a forehand volley and the other with a service victor that prompted Djokovic to roll his eyes. "I'm sure that, as I told him after the match, we're going to see a lot of him in the future". He wound up with almost twice as many unforced errors, 35, as winners, 18.

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"More or less, all the parts of my game are kind of going up and down. He needs to understand my mental situation on court, my preparation, the travel, the time where I need to recover", the Serbian added. And just getting to know each other, as I said, and then we will see where it takes us.' It's nearly an unbelievable situation thinking only 12 months ago he was lifting the Trophy: 'Obviously to win here past year has brought a lot of different emotions. "That's what happened today".

How unlikely was this result?

Thiem landed in the semifinals for the second straight year - Djokovic downed him 12 months ago - and will no doubt face a tougher test in Nadal, who will certainly be well rested.

Now he is at a crossroads of sorts. He split from coaches Boris Becker and Marian Vajda and other members of his team, bringing aboard Andre Agassi for Week 1 of the French Open.

On Wednesday, he wouldn't rule out some time off. "I obviously always expect a lot from myself, but it's a fact that I'm not playing close to my best, and I know that".

It's obviously tough to get out of it and figure out the way how to move ahead. Well, as I said, the next chapter for me.

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