Djokovic battles through to last 16 at French open

By Daily Sports on June 2, 2018

Views: 164

Novak Djokovic came through a gruelling four-hour match against Spanish 13th seed Roberto Bautista Agut to reach the last 16 at the French Open.

The 12-time Grand Slam champion was given his toughest test this year but won 6-4 6-7 (6-8) 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 after three hours and 48 minutes.

The Serb, 31, is seeded 20th as he searches for his best form following his return from an elbow injury.

He will play Spain’s 30th seed Fernando Verdasco in the fourth round.

Verdasco, 34, earned a shock 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 6-4 win over Grigor Dimitrov – the Bulgarian fourth seed and reigning ATP World Tour Finals champion.

After a quarter-final defeat by Dominic Thiem last year, Djokovic returned to Roland Garros not expected to challenge for the title following a year disrupted by an injury which needed surgery after the Australian Open in January.

A lack of action since has resulted in him dropping to 22nd in the world rankings – below Bautista Agut.

But his greater pedigree eventually shone through in a physical encounter on Court Suzanne Lenglen.

The former world number one has now made the last 16 of a Grand Slam for the 43rd time, tying with Jimmy Connors on the all-time list.

Angry Djokovic breaks racquet before recovering

Djokovic's history with the French Open has been a varied one, having suffered three final defeats in 2012, 2014 and 2015 before eventually landing the prize in 2016 – finally sealing his career Grand Slam with victory over Andy Murray.

And he again experienced a range of emotions – delight, disappointment, anger – at Roland Garros in an epic match which ended with two weary players smiling as they hugged at the net. (BBC)

Photo shows Djokovic

Source Daily Sports

Posted June 2, 2018

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