Dominic Thiem defeats clay-court specialist Pablo Cuevas in four sets

Dominic Thiem defeats clay-court specialist Pablo Cuevas in four sets

It's been a rocky Roland Garros for Thiem, who has dropped a set in each of his three matches.

In a battle of clay-court extraordinaires with one-handed backhands as elegant as some of the fans watching them, Dominic Thiem defeated Pablo Cuevas in four sets, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2, 7-5. It has been a rocky Roland Garros so far for the oddsmakers' No. 3 favorite, with Thiem dropping a set in each of his first three matches. Nevertheless, he's one of the final 16 players in contention for the Coupe des Mousquetaires.

After cruising through the first set, Thiem lost his range and struggled to find the court in the second. In an effort to handle Thiem’s overwhelming power, Cuevas shifted his court position further behind the baseline. This adjustment caused the Austrian to overhit, and Cuevas capitalized on the free points. 

Thiem responded in the next two sets by hitting the Uruguayan off the sides of the court with his massive kick serve and heavy top-spin groundstrokes. In the end, Thiem’s power and athleticism were too much for the 33-year old Cuevas. 

Thiem will face off against the red-hot Frenchman Gael Monfils in a fabulous round-of-16 matchup.