Thiem ends Cecchinato's run to reach French Open final

13 June, 2018, 17:18 | Author: Suzanne Horton
  • Argentina union group plans strike against Macri IMF

Cecchinato had never won a Grand Slam match before this year's Roland Garros but made the semis with a string of stunning wins.He put out seeded players Pablo Carreno Busta and David Goffin before the seismic shock of knocking out 2016 champion Djokovic in the quarter-finals.

At long last, Thiem converted his fifth set point when Cecchinato sent a forehand long. "Still, I know how to play against him".

But once he squandered that chance against Thiem, the Italian ended up falling to a 7-5 7-6 (10) 6-1 defeat.

Plenty have gone in with sound tactical plans against the 16-times Grand Slam champion in Paris but when the forehand bombardment begins, the best-laid plans usually fall apart as was the case in Friday's semi-final when Nadal thrashed Juan Martin del Potro who many thought posed a credible threat.

Well drilled as ever, Nadal looked relaxed as he a huge crowd swarmed to Court 4 to see him practice on a glorious Saturday afternoon in Paris.

Nadal appeared to be suffering with cramp in his left arm early in the third but even that discomfort could not derail him as the "King of Clay" extended his scarcely believable French Open win-loss record to 86-2, further underlining his status as the greatest of all time on the red dirt.

Nadal dominated the Argentine in three sets, beating him 6-4, 6-1, 6-2 in the clay court bout.

The first set had taken 57 minutes, in stiflingly humid conditions, but there was to be no let-up for the underdog in the second.

Anything can happen in a Grand Slam final.

"I am very happy to be back in the final here at Roland Garros".

Social media fanning Chicago gang violence study
Social media fanning Chicago gang violence study

"Today, all day, on Philippe Chatrier, the fans said "Forza, Marco", so I think this is the best moment for me", said Cecchinato."Against Dominic Thiem, he is top 10, and today all the people were for me".

In the second-set tiebreaker on Friday, Thiem went ahead 6-3 but missed out on three set points there, including a bad volley into the net at 6-4 that left him chewing ruefully on his left index finger.

That was swatted away with Nadal's double-handed backhand, though, and the second set duly went the way of the favourite.

"If you tell me seven, eight years ago that I will be here. having this trophy with me again, I will tell you that is something nearly impossible", Nadal said.

In Madrid, Thiem said the key was to be positive against Nadal. I had a lot of break points.

A fourth set point for Thiem vanished because of one of Cecchinato's many drop shots.

He takes on rising tennis star Dominic Thiem for the title. He then crushed a tired looking Zverev 6-4 6-2 6-1 before halting the fairy tale run of Cecchinato 7-6 7-6 6-1. So there are not 10 more chances to keep playing here.

It looks a daunting mission for the 24-year-old Thiem but not necessarily an impossible one.

Nadal is 49-0 in all other clay-court contests over the past two seasons.

But the Spaniard was impressive on Friday, finishing with 35 winners and 19 unforced errors to Del Potro's analysis of 20 and 32."Thiem is an awesome player".


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