PARIS, France – World No. 1 Novak Djokovic continued his bid to hold all 4 Grand Slam titles simultaneously for the second time by thrashing Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff in the French Open fourth round on Monday, June 3.
The 32-year-old Serbian was in irrepressible form as he romped to a 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 win to set up a quarterfinal against 5th seed Alexander Zverev.
Djokovic is the first man to make the last 8 in Paris for 10 successive seasons. It’s his 13th apperance in the quarterfinals overall.
“It was tricky with the rain, but that’s Paris,” said the 2016 champion after playing in drizzly conditions.
“I’m really confident with my serve. I hope it continues like that.”
Only Australian great Rod Laver has held all 4 majors at the same time twice before, after his calendar Grand Slams in 1962 and 1969.
But Djokovic, who first held all 4 when he won his maiden French Open title 3 years ago, is looking to follow in Laver’s footsteps after adding the Australian Open trophy earlier this year to his 2018 Wimbledon and US Open titles.
The 15-time Grand Slam champion powered 31 winners past world No. 45 Struff on Court Philippe Chatrier and made only 12 unforced errors.
He broke serve 5 times in the match and did not face a break point until stumbling slightly when serving for victory.
Djokovic saved that, though, as Struff netted, and he booked a quarterfinal spot on his first match point.
Standing in Djokovic’s way is 22-year-old Zverev, who reached his second successive Roland Garros quarterfinal on Monday with a 3-6, 6-2, 6-2, 7-6 (7/5) win over Italy’s Fabio Fognini.
Last year, Zverev achieved his best run at the Slams, making the quarterfinals where he was defeated by eventual runner-up Dominic Thiem.
“Fabio is playing the best tennis of his life,” said Zverev of the 32-year-old Italian who won his first Masters title on the clay of Monte Carlo in the run-up to Paris.
“So I am happy to get through this and into another quarterfinal here.”
Zverev is 2-2 against Djokovic in his career but won their only meeting on clay in the Italian Open final in 2017 in straight sets.
Fognini, the 9th seed, hit 53 unforced errors as his game fell to pieces after a promising opening set. – Rappler.com