Sunday July 5th, 2020 10:55PM

Tsitsipas 1st Greek in 83 years to reach last 16 at French

By The Associated Press
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PARIS (AP) — Stefanos Tsitsipas overcame a "psychological" challenge and lethargic legs to become the first Greek player — man or woman — to reach the fourth round of the French Open in more than 80 years.

The sixth-seeded Tsitsipas saved a set point in the fourth-set tiebreaker of a 7-5, 6-3, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (6) win over 60th-ranked Filip Krajinovic that lasted two days.

The last Greek player to go this far at Roland Garros was Lazaros Stalios way back in 1936.

The match began on Friday but was suspended at 5-5 in the third set due to darkness. When it resumed on Saturday, it was determined by just a few points in both tiebreakers.

"It's very tricky when you come back after a day. It's something very unusual, very psychological. You tend to think about the match all the time. It's not easy with the nerves," the 20-year-old Tsitsipas said. "But I got the job done."

"My body wasn't feeling great today. I felt much slower than yesterday," Tsitsipas added. "So I'm happy I somehow found a way despite being so slow and not active. ... It could have turned into a drama match if (it went) five sets."

Up next for Tsitsipas is either 2015 champion Stanislas Wawrinka or Grigor Dimitrov, who were also resuming their match from a day earlier. After that, Tsitsipas could meet Roger Federer, whom he beat en route to the Australian Open semifinals in January.

Also reaching the last 16 was fifth-seeded Alexander Zverev, who overcame No. 30 Dusan Lajovic 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 1-6, 6-2 for his second five-setter in his opening three matches.

Zverev's fourth-round opponent will be Monte Carlo Masters champion Fabio Fognini , who eliminated Roberto Bautista Agut 7-6 (5), 6-4, 4-6, 6-1.

In the women's draw, Simona Halep's title defense remains on track following a methodical 6-2, 6-1 third-round win over 27th-seeded Lesia Tsurenko that lasted just 55 minutes. She'll next play either Olympic champion Monica Puig or Iga Swiatek.

Later, Serena Williams was continuing her bid for a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles trophy against 20-year-old American Sofia Kenin.

___

More AP tennis coverage: https://www.apnews.com/apf-Tennis and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Tennis, AP Sports - Men's Tennis, AP Sports - Women's Tennis
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