Zverev Ousts Tiafoe, Ruud, Rune Advance; Djokovic, Alcaraz v Musetti At French Open
It turned out to be a straightforward day at the French Open in the men’s draw on Saturday as form held for the most part.
Ruud dropped the first but then turned things up to beat 26-year-old Zhizhen Zhang 4-6, 6-4, 6-1, 6-4.
“It was very tough,” Ruud said. “I was a bit frustrated at the beginning. I didn’t start as I hoped and he was hitting many winners. I didn’t really find a hole in his game. Then at 5-4 in the second set he got sloppy and that gave me confidence. I started playing better in the third and fourth.”
Rune had an easy time dispatching Argentina’s Genaro Alberto Olivieri 6-4, 6-1, 6-3.
Ruud will now face Geneva winner Nicholas Jarry topped American 6-2, 6-3, 6-7(7-9), 6-3 while Rune gets Francisco Cerundolo who held on to beat Taylor Fritz 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, 7-5.
The arguable favorite in the match, Cerundolo fell well behind early nearly going down three breaks. But the Argentine began dictating with his huge forehand while Fritz struggled to stay in the rallies. Down the stretch, though, Cerundolo began to wobble but pulled out the win over No. 9 seed to reach his first Slam fourth round.
In the bottom quarter, Argentina’s Tomas Martin Etcheverry upended No. 15 seed Borna Coric 6-3, 7-6(7-5), 6-2. He’ll now get No. 27 seed Yoshihito Nishioka had to work to defeat (23y,172r) Brazil’s Thiago Seyboth Wild in a match that went the distance 3-6, 7-6(10-8), 2-6, 6-4, 6-0. T
A year after rolling his ankle, the German is back in the last 16 after toughing out Frances Tiafoe 3-6, 7-6(7-3), 6-1, 7-6(7-5).
Tiafoe came out hot but poor errors and shot selection began to be an issue. Zverev also led the American 6-1 coming in. Zverev kept popping that big serve and backhand, and despite some double fault issues late, held off Tiafoe.
“I’m trying to make the match as short as possible. I’m trying to not let him smile,” Zverev said. “Once he has that smile on his face, he plays his best tennis. We are entertainers, yes, but I’m trying to win the match.”
Tomorrow’s slate boasts fourth round play with No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz meets No. 17 Lorenzo Musetti. Musetti came out ahead in their only previous battle in the 2022 Hamburg final.
No. 3 Novak Djokovic squares off against 5-set kind Juan Pablo Varillas in a first-time tour-level clash.
Also, No. 5 Stefanos Tsitsipas takes on Austrian qualifier Sebastian Ofner and No. 11 Karen Khachanov faces Lorenzo Sonego.
SUNDAY FRENCH OPEN SCHEDULE
Court Philippe-CHATRIER – Début à 11h00
Anastasia PAVLYUCHENKOVA (—) contre Elise MERTENS (BEL)
Pas avant 12h30
Novak DJOKOVIC (SRB) contre Juan Pablo VARILLAS (PER)
Carlos ALCARAZ (ESP) contre Lorenzo MUSETTI (ITA)
Pas avant 20h15
4 SD H Sloane STEPHENS (USA) contre Aryna SABALENKA (—)
Court Suzanne-LENGLEN – Début à 11h00
Karen KHACHANOV (—) contre Lorenzo SONEGO (ITA)
Karolina MUCHOVA (CZE) contre Elina AVANESYAN (—)
Elina SVITOLINA (UKR) contre Daria KASATKINA (—)
Pas avant 16h30
Sebastian OFNER (AUT) contre Stefanos TSITSIPAS (GRE)
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