Novak Djokovic equaled the number of wins at Roland Garros by Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal entering the fourth round of the French Open for the 11e consecutive times.
The Serbian easily disposed of Colombian Daniel Elahi Galan in three sets of 6-0, 6-3, 6-2 in the third round on Saturday, meaning the favorite conceded just five games in each of his first three games. at Roland-Garros.
The clash took place in light rain in the first set, which escalated thereafter, forcing the organizers to close the roof of the stadium.
Djokovic has never been really pushed around by Galan, and he increased his record to 34-1 in 2020.
“If you impose yourself from the start on the pitch, which I managed to do in my first three games here, it becomes very difficult for your opponents to believe that they can come back in the game and go up the hill », Declared the Serb.
Galan confirmed Djokovic’s statements. “Obviously he’s superior to me, but you also feel like you have to do everything perfectly or you’re going to get whitewashed,” he observed. When I was trailing 6-0, 2-0, I was worried about that. “
The “Djoker” will face Russian Karen Khachanov in the next round, who defeated Chilean Cristian Garin 6-2, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2 during the day.
On the other hand, fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas advanced to the fourth round for the second year in a row, after benefiting from Aljaz Bedene’s retirement in the third set of their duel due to an injury. at the right ankle.
Tsitsipas was leading 6-1, 6-2, 3-1 when Bedene hoisted the white flag.
The Greek dominated the match so far. He had hit twice as many winning shots as Bedene (28-13), and committed only a third of his unforced errors.
Grigor Dimitrov used the same luck to find himself in the fourth round for the first time in ten appearances at the tournament, following the retirement of his opponent Roberto Carballes Baena after two sets due to an intestinal virus.
Dimitrov, the 18e seeded 6-1, 6-3 as Carballes Baena retired. The Spaniard, who had beaten Canada’s Denis Shapovalov in the previous round, said he woke up around 3:00 am Saturday morning “with a severe pain in his stomach”.
Earlier today, Germany’s Daniel Altmaier surprised seventh seed Matteo Berrettini 6-2, 7-6 (5), 6-4 in the third round.
Altmaier, 186e world player, will be joined by two other young prospects – American Sebastian Korda and Italy’s Jannik Sinner – in the fourth round. There had never been so many rookies at this stage of competition at Roland Garros since 1994.
Altmaier suffered from numerous injuries early in his career, but he still hasn’t conceded a set on Paris clay this year – however, he lost one in three qualifying games. He also won his three tiebreakers in his first career Grand Slam tournament.
He will cross swords in the fourth round with Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta, who toppled compatriot Roberto Bautista-Agut 6-4, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 on Saturday.
“It’s great for tennis to see new faces and young players being successful,” said Djokovic. You want to see famous faces because it draws the crowds, but at the same time, it’s good to see the kids winning in one of the biggest tournaments in the world. It’s good for the sport. “
For his part, Andrey Rublev advanced to the fourth round after taking the measure of South African Kevin Anderson 6-3, 6-2, 6-3.
Anderson, 34, still has hopes of winning a Grand Slam after losing to Rafael Nadal in the U.S. Open final in 2017 and Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon final in 2018.
However, the 118e world player was no match against Rublev, 13e seed, on the field of the Simonne-Mathieu stadium. He couldn’t convert a single break point against the 22-year-old Russian.
The latter will now face Hungarian Marton Fucsovics, who defeated Brazilian Thiago Monteiro 7-5, 6-1, 6-3.
Rublev was ousted in the first round in his only previous appearance at the Roland Garros tournament in 2017. He advanced to the quarterfinals of the US Open this year, as well as in 2017.