10 Things to Know, Day 10: Thiem going for fifth straight RG semifinal

10 Things to Know, Day 10: Thiem going for fifth straight RG semifinal

The Austrian is trying to reach the Roland Garros semifinals for the fifth year in a row, something only three men in the Open Era have done.

Trivia: Jannik Sinner’s the first man to reach the quarterfinals in his Roland Garros debut since Rafael Nadal in 2005, and he’s playing Nadal. Who did Nadal play in the quarterfinals when he made HIS Roland Garros debut in 2005?

Top 5 stars Nadal, Dominic Thiem and Elina Svitolina are all in action as the quarterfinals kick off. The first four quarterfinal matches at 2020 Roland Garros—two men’s, two women’s—take Court Philippe Chatrier.

Thiem’s trying to reach the semifinals here for the fifth straight year, which only three men in the Open Era have done. Those three men are… you guessed it, Roger Federer, Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

The No. 3-ranked Thiem takes on Diego Schwartzman, who’s 0-7 against Top 5 players at majors. The Argentine is also 1-23 against Top 5 players overall, though there’s one very encouraging sign—his only career Top 5 win came just a few weeks ago in Rome, beating the King of Clay, Nadal.

Thiem’s 4-0 in quarterfinals at Roland Garros. He’s also 6-1 in quarterfinals across all majors, and his loss was almost a win—he fell to Nadal in the 2018 US Open quarterfinals, 0-6, 6-4, 7-5, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (5), a match that lasted 4:49, and a match he even won more points in (171 to 165)!

Sinner isn’t just playing Nadal for the first time today, he’s never played any of the Big 3. The Italian has never played Nadal, Federer or Djokovic before, nor anyone ranked in the Top 4.

Nadal’s 52-0 at Roland Garros against players ranked outside the Top 30 (and 92-0 in sets here against players ranked outside the Top 60). No. 75-ranked Sinner will try to defy both stats today.

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Sinner’s the youngest man to reach a major quarterfinal since Bernard Tomic at Wimbledon in 2011. If he wins today, he’ll become the youngest man to reach a major semifinal since Nadal here in 2005.

If Nadal gets past Sinner, the rest of the field had better watch out. The Spaniard is 24-0 at Roland Garros once he gets past the quarterfinals—that’s 12-0 in semifinals and 12-0 in finals.

Two of today’s women’s quarterfinalists—Nadia Podoroska and Martina Trevisan—had no main draw wins at majors to their names before this tournament. They were both 0-1, Podoroska falling first round at the 2016 US Open (to Annika Beck) and Trevisan falling first round at the 2020 Australian Open (to Sofia Kenin).

Podoroska and Trevisan are the 10th and 11th qualifiers to reach the women’s quarterfinals here in the Open Era. None of the first nine qualifiers to get this far made it any further, though.

Yesterday’s Trivia: Going into Monday, the only two continents of the world that didn’t have players remaining in the singles draws at Roland Garros were Australia and Antarctica.