Stunning backhand pass from Davidovich Fokina! A fourth break point for the Spaniard … and he makes it! Ruud sends the ball long and Davidovich Fokina can serve for the match.
Cor! Biiiig backhand winner from Davidovich Fokina to bring it back to deuce on Ruud’s serve. And now Ruud earns a third break point of the game against his better-ranked opponent.
So, on Court 14, it’s a real classic unfolding. Ruud (seeded 15) is serving to save a couple of break points against Davidovich Fokina. He wins a long, punishing rally for 30-40, then produced an ace for deuce! The fans are transfixed by this one.
Zverev beats Djere: 6-2, 7-5, 6-2!
C’est ça. Zverev holds to love, and reaches the fourth round for the fourth year in a row. Djere will be kicking himself, still, about that second set. But it’s all good experience.
It’s now 5-5 over on Court 7. “Vamos!” yells Davidovich Fokina as he holds serve.
Djere manages to hold serve. YetZverev will serve for a straight-sets win and a place in the last 16 of the French Open. He is 5-2 up.
Ruud leads 5-4 against Davidovich Fokina, with the latter serving to stay in the match.
Djere has a game point – but double-faults. His body language is awful, he just doesn’t want to be out there anymore, knowing it’s only a matter of time before his misery is ended by Zverev.
Zverev and Djere are at deuce. Zverev can smell blood, and takes on a big backhand after a massive forehand return to start with, but it falls just long.
Zverev eases into a 5-1 third-set lead. He is one game away from the last 16 at Roland Garros.
Ruud and Davidovich Fokina are treating the sodden fans to a classic on Court 14: Ruud leads 4-3 in the fifth and final set. Meanwhile, Marcos Giron and the 22nd seed Cristian Garin have just started their third-round match on Court 7.
This is going to be over fairly quickly, it seems: Zverev has just eased into a 4-1 third-set lead against his demoralised opponent. 6-2, 7-5, 4-1, and Djere (which the commentators are pronouncing ‘Jerry’) is staring down the barrel.
Love hold for Zverev. He’s won eight out of nine games now.
Djere holds for 2-1. His loyal band of supporters clap their hands and cheer. Their man is fighting again, having been so annoyed at the way he lost the second set. Zverev is still in control mind you. The narrative seems to have been set, but can Djere again find that level he achieved in the second set, when he was matching – and bettering – the German in the longer exchanges?
Zverev has gone 2-0 up in the third set now and has won seven games in a row.
The commentator Jo Durie has just mentioned reading our news story about Yana Sizikova’s arrest in a match-fixing investigation. Here’s the piece from Tumaini Carayol:
The 27th-seeded Italian is dumped out, surprisingly, and the world No 51 Delbonis reaches the last 16 of a slam for the first time.
Zverev has a little row with the umpire about a line call. Djere has a break point, and tries to win it with a lob, but it drops long, and Zverev has avoided letting that little disagreement with the umpire put him off.
“Word gets round the locker room very quickly if you’re a quitter,” observes Jo Durie in the commentary box, suggesting that Djere has to keep motoring here and avoid a complete capitulation, which would cost him in terms of his reputation among his fellow pros.
Zverev crunches an ace down the middle as if to reinforce his dominance. He then produces a 135mph serve, his quickest of the match, and unsurprisingly wins that point as well. A clean winner from Djere on Zverev’s second serve, though, now brings deuce.
Djere’s focus seems to have evaporated after he threw away that second set – or had it wrestled from him by his opponent Zverev. The German breaks to move 1-0 ahead in the third set and it feels very much as if Zverev has a total strangehold on his match.
Djere, it emerges on replay, smashed a ball into the stands in pure frustration on losing that last game.
Casper Ruud and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina are into a fifth set: Ruud just won the fourth set 6-0. Delbonis is on the verge of beating Fognini in straight sets.
“Come on!” Zverev yells in delight after winning the second set and understandably so – he saved three set points at 5-3 and 40-0 down.
Djere came from two sets down to defeat Miomir Kecmanović a couple of days ago, but it is very hard to see him pulling off the same here.
Zverev moves 6-5 up with another break of serve and Djere is visibly disgusted with himself, after having three set points a few moments ago. Zverev to serve for a two-set lead.
The German holds for 5-5, despite a double fault during that game. Here’s a big test for Djere, who could do with a nice easy hold to calm his nerves. But he’s not getting many free points from Zverev right now.
Zverev breaks to make it 4-5! That’s some serious fight from Zverev, who was a point away from ceding the first set. Djere crashes a ball into the clay in frustration – he should be home and dry in this second set, but now he’s in a dogfight.
Great hustle from Zverev as he fights back from 40-0 down to deuce, with Djere on the verge of sealing the set … and now he wins a break point!
Delbonis has gone 3-0 up in the third against the racquet-puncher Fognini.
Nishikori, meanwhile, has won the first set against Laaksonen, 7-5.
The umpire calls for new balls after Zverev holds serves to make it 5-3. Zverev has drifted out of this match somewhat, and Djere will now serve for the second set.
Break for Djere! He seals it by winning the best rally of the match! It’s 4-2 and we’ve got ourselves a game on. Djere mixed it up nicely in that long rally, holding back with a sliced backhand here and there, and showing impressive patience before stretching Zverev sufficiently to force the error from his opponent. Zverev nets a backhand, while on the run, and Djere is well in control of this second set at the moment.
Djere moves to 0-30 on the Zverev serve, partly thanks to a double fault. He takes on a big down-the-line winner to try and earn three break points but again, it’s just outside the tramline, and perhaps he didn’t need to take that on. Anyway, he does eventually earn a break point, at 30-40 …
In terms of power, Zverev has looked a little less dominant in the last few minutes, but suddenly he fires back with a fizzing double-handed backhand that is simply too hot for Djere to handle. Zverev goes on to earn two break points at 15-40 … and he wins the first one as Djere sends a forehand an inch or two wide. Zverev breaks back, and it’s 3-2 in the second set.
Djere tries an astonishing cross-court pass on the first point of Zverev’s service game, but it drops fractionally wide. However, it’s another sign that the Serbian is feeling confident and ready to take shots on, where previously he looked tentative and nervy.
Zverev holds, and it’s 3-1 in the second.
Djere, all of a sudden, clearly believes he can match Zverev in the longer rallies. He gets the better of the German in a long exchange at deuce on his own serve, smashing a volleyed winner to the corner, and then converting his advantage to lead 3-0 in the second set. He has a small band of vocal fans who are on their feet and singing as their man begins to grow into this match more and more.
Three break points for Djere! He converts the first thanks to an unforced error by Zverev, who sends a forehand wide, and Djere leads this second set 2-0. That game was a scrappy affair from the German and Djere is back in this.
Beautiful play from Zverev, getting right over the top of Djere’s second serve, and returning it with punishing force and accuracy to his opponent’s forehand side. Djere manages to stay in the point for a few shots, but it’s only a matter of time, and Zverev clips an efficient volley to the corner which Djere can’t reach.
All that said – Djere holds serves after all, and leads the second set 1-0.
Zverev has won 73% of points on his first serve, and 83% on his second.
Zverev holds to love, with no momentum shift in sight for Djere. He takes the first set 6-2.
Here is Fognini punching his racquet a little earlier:
Fognini, apparently, punched the strings of his racquet and needed a medical timeout, with claret everywhere, in his ongoing match against Delbonis.
Now, Zverev is serving for the set.
Boom! Djere pounces on a rare short ball from his opponent and crushes a forehand winner to the corner. It’s 5-2. Far too early to suggest that’s a momentum-shifter of a shot, but it will feed the Serbian’s confidence a little.
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