Dominic Thiem Ends Marco Cecchinato Fairytale To Reach Final

Ruben Hill
June 8, 2018

He's the pretender to the throne of the King of Clay, but rising star Dominic Thiem has a chance to usurp Rafael Nadal after reaching his first French Open final.

Having made the semi-finals for the third consecutive time, this was a logical progression for the 24-year-old Austrian, who prevailed 7-5, 7-6, 6-1 against the world No 72, this year's surprise package at Roland Garros.

Thiem will face either 10-time champion, and world No 1, Rafael Nadal or Juan Martin del Potro, the fifth-seeded Argentine, in Sunday's final.

Cecchinato brilliantly saved two break points at 2-2 in the second and continued to hold his own to reach a tie-break, where a series of sensational winners from both players saw Thiem let three successive set points slip.

The Austrian will face the victor of Juan Martin del Potro and Rafael Nadal.

"It was not a very nice feeling", Thiem told the Court Philippe Chatrier crowd afterward.

After dropping the first two sets he played in the opening round, Cecchinato came back to win that match in five sets, then proceeded to string together upsets. Cecchinato was accused of match-fixing and suspended for 18 months in 2016, but he appealed, and his punishment was dropped on a technicality.

Thiem was quick to respond, reeling off the next three games to take the set in 46 minutes.

Yet Thiem's recovery was exceptional, moving out of sight with a ruthless second break and a confident hold to wrap up the opener.

If it is to be Nadal, who already has 10 French Open titles to his name, Thiem will not be fazed.

Later Friday, Nadal looks to take another step closer to an 11th French Open title and 17th at the majors.

"I need to regenerate and have a good breakfast to keep up my good level". "I will watch the second semifinal to study my next opponent a little bit, then full power on Sunday".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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