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Jun 1, 2024 2:39 pm

Alexander Zverev survives 5-set thriller at French Open

zverev french open

Fourth-seeded Alexander Zverev advanced to the fourth round of the French Open on Saturday, staging a furious rally to fend off Tallon Griekspoor of the Netherlands in a five-set marathon.

The German need four hours, 13 minutes to eliminate Griekspoor 3-6, 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (10-3) on the clay courts at Roland Garros in Paris. And he needed to come back from a fifth-set deficit, down a double break in a match littered with break opportunities.

Griekspoor broke Zverev to open the fifth set and again in the fifth game to take a 4-1 lead. But Zverev evened the set at 4-4, breaking his opponent in Griekspoor’s next two service games – aided by three double faults. In the ensuing tiebreaker, Griekspoor failed to record a point on five of his six serves.

The Dutchman, seeded 26th, was looking for his third Top 10 win and his first appearance in the fourth round of a Grand Slam event. He was forced to play defense throughout the match, fighting off 13 of 18 break points.

Also advancing Saturday were fifth-seeded Daniil Medvedev of Russia and Australia’s Alex de Minaur, the 11th seed. The two will meet each other in the fourth round.

Medvedev knocked out Czech Tomas Machac 7-6 (4), 7-5, 1-6, 6-4. As for de Minaur, he was a winner over Jan-Lennard Struff of Germany, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-3.

Saturday’s play started with the continuation of two matches suspended Friday due to rain.

No. 21 Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada took out No. 15 Ben Shelton 6-4, 6-2, 6-1 to move on to a fourth-round match with Carlos Alcaraz of Spain, the third seed.

Auger-Aliassime struck 28 winners and 18 unforced errors, compared to 17 and 36, respectively, for the American in the one-hour, 52 minute match.

“For me today, the things that were in my control I did really well,” Auger-Aliassime said. “I am pleased with how I handled the match and gave him difficulty. I was able to put a lot of returns in and force his targets on first serve. He was not getting as many free points on that serve that he usually gets, so we had to engage in a rally every time and I think that paid off as the match went on.”

In the other suspended match, eighth-seeded Hubert Hurkacz of Poland topped Denis Shapovalov of Canada 6-3, 7-6 (0), 4-6, 6-1 to earn his 200th tour-level career victory.

–Field Level Media

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