Roland Garros: Stefanos Tsitsipas First Greek Since 1936 to Reach French Open 4th Round
Stefanos Tsitsipas defeated Filip Krajinovic in a five-set contest at the French Open, winning the encounter 7-5, 6-3, 6-7 (5/7), 7-6 (8/6).
Stefanos Tsitsipas booked his place in the French Open round four (Photo Credit: Reuters)
Paris: Stefanos Tsitsipas said he is targeting "more records" after becoming the first Greek player in 83 years to reach the second week at Roland Garros on Saturday as he survived a scare in the third round against Filip Krajinovic.
The sixth seed led by two sets overnight, with the match suspended at 5-5 in the third due to darkness at 9:52 p.m. local time, and saw Serbia's Krajinovic launch a comeback.
Tsitsipas lost the set in a tie-break but sealed a 7-5, 6-3, 6-7 (5/7), 7-6 (8/6) success on Court Philippe Chatrier after overturning a 5-3 deficit and saving a set point in the fourth.
The last Greek player to reach the second week at Roland Garros was Lazaros Stalios in 1936.
"I'm proud, proud to be the first one in Open era probably, if you would call it this way," he said.
"I think there is more than that, in my opinion. More records to break than just this."
The 20-year-old will take on former champion Stan Wawrinka on Sunday for a place in his second Grand Slam quarter-final, after the three-time major title winner beat Grigor Dimitrov 7-6 (7/5), 7-6 (7/4), 7-6 (10/8).
Wawrinka has been finding form in recent months after tumbling out of the top 250 in the rankings after struggling with injuries and loss of form.
The 34-year-old Swiss is seeded again, at 24th, and hit 14 aces and 57 winners in a high-quality last-32 clash against former world number three Dimitrov.
"It seems like he has found his form, his game. And as we all know, he did quite well at the French Open plenty of times, not just once," said Tsitsipas of Wawrinka, who also reached the final in 2017.
"He's a dangerous player. He knows clay very well. He has a big game."
Tsitsipas stunned Roger Federer en route to the Australian Open semi-finals earlier this year, while it is the first time Wawrinka has reached the second week of a Grand Slam since losing the Roland Garros final to Rafael Nadal two years ago.
"He (Tsitsipas) is a really young player, already at the top of the game, already winning a lot of matches, already beating the top players, making his way to even better career for a long time," said Wawrinka.
Tsitsipas had battled back from 5-2 down in the third set against Krajinovic to keep his hopes of a straight-sets win alive.
World number 60 Krajinovic has good memories of the French capital, though, having reached the Paris Masters final in 2017, and forced a fourth set in a high-quality tie-break.
He looked likely to take the match into a decider when Tsitsipas made back-to-back double faults to be broken in the seventh game, but Krajinovic played a dreadful game when serving for the set and was broken to love.
Tsitsipas took full advantage, forcing another breaker, in which he sealed victory, after saving a set point, on his first match point.
Wawrinka restarted his match against Dimitrov on Court 1 two sets to the good, and got over the line in a marathon third-set tie-break after saving five set points.
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