Dominic Thiem defeated Novak Djokovic in five sets on Saturday 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 6-3 to set up a rematch of last year’s clash with Rafa Nadal in the French Open final.
Thiem showed his ability to stay in long rallies against the world number one, and despite some poor errors he showed enough class, and took advantage of some luck, to reach the final in Paris.
Thiem benefitted from a couple of slices of luck with the net helping him on more than one occasion, with one of those seeing him secure a critical break back in the fourth game of the fourth set.
Djokovic, much the better player for most of the morning, started to put pressure on Thiem and the Austrian began to make a few unforced errors as the game tightened up again.
A double fault from Thiem saw Djokovic break and then serve to level up and force a deciding set.
Thiem missed the chance for an early break despite a barely believable slice across the net but the net came to his aid again in the fourth as he found that break and went 3-1 ahead.
However Thiem rallied in Djokovic’s next service game and broke to finally end the contest after over four hours, and end Djokovic’s run of 26 Grand Slam victories in a row, denying him the chance to lift the Grand Slam.
Thiem will now face Nadal on Sunday after the Spaniard defeated Roger Federer in three straight sets