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PARIS, FRANCE – JUNE 08: Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece celebrates match point in their mens singles quarter final match against Daniil Medvedev of Russia during day ten of the 2021 French Open at Roland Garros on June 08, 2021 in Paris, France. (Photo : Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Here comes the Next Gen! Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev booked their places in the semifinal round of the 2021 French Open Tuesday with impressive straight-set victories over Daniil Medvedev and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.
In the women’s draw, Tamara Zidansek and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova emerged victorious in marathon quarterfinal battles to set up an intriguing Final Four clash.
Tsitsipas and Zverev forge semis showdown
Stefanos Tsitsipas showed Daniil Medvedev that the clay courts are his domain, beating the Russian world no. 2 in straight sets, 6-3, 7-6 (3), 7-5, in a match that lasted two hours and 21 minutes.
Away from the red clay, Medvedev held a 6-1 advantage against Tsitsipas before this matchup. However, the edge was with Tsitsipas this time around, who recorded his first victory against the Russian since 2019.
It was still a fantastic tournament for Medvedev, who didn’t advance past the first round of the French Open before this year’s event.
Tsitsipas has now reached the semifinals in Paris for the second year running and will now appear in his third consecutive Grand Slam semifinal, showing the continuing maturity and growth of the 22-year-old Greek superstar. He will have his toughest test yet, though, in the next round as he will face Alexander Zverev, who’s playing some excellent tennis at the moment.
Zverev demolished unseeded Spanish opponent Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, 6-4, 6-1, 6-1, in a quarterfinal match that lasted just one hour and 36 minutes. It was a dominant performance by Zverev, who booked his first semifinal appearance at Roland Garros.
He’s just the third German player to reach this stage of the competition in the Open Era (since April 1968), following in the footsteps of all-time greats Boris Becker (1987, ’89, ’91) and Michael Stich (1996).
Tsitsipas holds a 5-2 advantage against Zverev in their recent head-to-head meetings. The showdown between Tsitsipas and Zverev will be the youngest Grand Slam semifinal pairing since 22-year-old Andy Murray locked horns with 21-year-old Marin Cilic at the 2010 Australian Open.
It is also the youngest French Open semifinal since 22-year-old Rafael Nadal defeated a then 21-year-old Novak Djokovic back in 2008.
Zidansek, Pavlyuchenkova seal surprising semis spots
Tamara Zidansek and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova continued to exceed expectations Tuesday as they both survived marathon three-set battles to set up an unlikely semifinal showdown.
Zidansek survived a tense encounter with Spaniard Paola Badosa, winning 7-5, 4-6, 8-6 in a match that lasted two hours and 26 minutes. Zidansek recorded 48 winners and 39 unforced errors in a match that featured several momentum shifts, while Badosa had 31 winners and 47 unforced errors.
It was Zidansek, however, who made history as she became the first Slovenian player to reach the last four of a major. Zidansek will enter the Top 50 for the first time in next week’s WTA rankings with her victory.
Zidansek will next face Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who also featured in a marathon three-setter Tuesday. Pavlyuchenkova battled back from a one-set deficit to beat doubles partner Elena Rybakina, 6-7 (2), 7-2, 9-7. It was a huge result for Pavlyuchenkova, who had lost her first six Grand Slam quarterfinals in singles.
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