Wednesday, June 3, 2015

French Open Day 11 recap: Djoker dominates Nadal

Novak Djokovic, shown at Indian Wells in March, beat Rafael Nadal
7-5, 6-3, 6-1 in the French Open quarterfinals. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Men's quarterfinals -- Top-seeded Novak Djokovic handed nine-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal only his second loss in the tournament, winning by the surprisingly one-sided score of 7-5, 6-3, 6-1 to reach the semifinals.
   Djokovic extended his overall winning streak to 27 matches, ended Nadal's string of consecutive wins at Roland Garros at 39 and beat Nadal in the French Open for the first time in seven encounters.
   Djokovic had lost to Nadal at Roland Garros for the past three years, falling in the 2012 and 2014 finals and the 2013 semifinals.
   Nadal, who turned 29 today, fell to 70-2 in the French Open. His only other loss came against Robin Soderling in the fourth round in 2009.
   Nadal will drop to at least No. 10 in the world rankings on Monday, his lowest position since April 2005. He will fall to No. 11 if Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beats Stan Wawrinka in Friday's semifinals.
   Djokovic, bidding to become the eighth man to complete a career Grand Slam, will meet third-seeded Andy Murray in a rematch of this year's Australian Open final won by the Serb. Murray defeated seventh-seeded David Ferrer, the 2013 runner-up to Nadal, 7-6 (4), 6-2, 5-7, 6-1. 
   Women's quarterfinals -- Top-seeded Serena Williams routed No. 17 Sara Errani, the 2012 runner-up to Maria Sharapova, 6-1, 6-3. Also, No. 23 Timea Bacsinszky of Switzerland downed unseeded Alison Van Uytvanck of Belgium 6-4, 7-5. 
   Men's semifinal matchups -- Djokovic (1) vs. Murray (3). Djokovic leads the series 18-8 with a seven-match winning streak (all on hardcourts). Djokovic is ahead 2-0 on clay, winning 7-6 in the third set in the 2011 Italian Open semifinals in their last meeting on the surface.
   Wawrinka (8) vs. Tsonga (14). The series is tied 3-3, but Wawrinka has won the last two matches, both on clay.
   Women's semifinal matchups -- Ana Ivanovic (7) vs. Lucie Safarova (13). Safarova leads the series 5-3, including a 6-3, 6-3 victory in the third round of last year's French Open.
   Williams (1) vs. Bacsinszky (23). Williams leads the series 2-0, most recently winning 7-5, 6-3 in the quarterfinals at Indian Wells in March.
   Stars and stripes -- Williams, 33, seeks her third French Open title after winning in 2002 and 2013.
   Bethanie Mattek-Sands, a 30-year-old Phoenix resident, had a big day.
   The seventh-seeded team of Mattek-Sands and Safarova, the reigning Australian Open champions, ousted top-seeded Martina Hingis and Sania Mirza 7-5, 6-2 in the women's doubles quarterfinals.
   Also, the second-seeded pair of Mattek-Sands and Mike Bryan reached the mixed doubles final with a 4-6, 6-3 [10-8] victory over unseeded Katarina Srebotnik and Horia Tecau. Mattek-Sands and Bryan will face unseeded Lucie Hradecka and Marcin Matkowski.
   Half of the junior boys singles quarterfinalists are American. Six-foot-10 (2.08-meter) Reilly Opelka of Palm Coast, Fla., led the march, knocking off top-seeded Orlando Luz of Brazil 7-5, 4-6, 7-5. Also advancing were No. 2 Taylor Fritz, No. 6 Michael Mmoh and No. 13 Tommy Paul.
   Americans Katerina Stewart, seeded third, and CiCi Bellis, seeded fourth, moved into the quarters in junior girls singles.
   Northern California connection -- Bryan played at Stanford in 1997 and 1998, helping the Cardinal win the NCAA title both years. He and twin brother Bob are scheduled to play three matches for the Sacramento-based California Dream in World TeamTennis this summer.
   Bellis, 16, lives in Atherton in the San Francisco Bay Area.
   Fast fact -- Djokovic trimmed Nadal's lead in their head-to-head series to 23-21.
   Quote -- Nadal: "I lost in 2009, and (it) was not the end. I lost in 2015, and (it) is not the end."
   Thursday's top matches (starting at 6 a.m. PDT) -- Ivanovic (7) vs. Safarova (13), ESPN2, followed by Williams (1) vs. Bacsinszky (23), NBC.

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