Passport to RG, Day 6—Gaston stuns Wawrinka, Thiem next; Halep cruises

Passport to RG, Day 6—Gaston stuns Wawrinka, Thiem next; Halep cruises

Rafael Nadal, Simona Halep and Dominic Thiem were all unfazed in their third-round matches, but Stan Wawrinka fell in five sets on Friday at Roland Garros. Plus, Sebastian Korda continued his dream run to reach the round of 16.

From first ball to last, keep up to date with the latest from Roland Garros every day on TENNIS.com. We'll have match updates, photos, video highlights and more in our daily notebook: Passport to RG. 


Gaston, Wawrinka on their five-set match

Hugo Gaston prevailed, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-0, over 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka to the delight of a Parisian crowd earlier Friday. Here's what each had to say afterwards:

Hugo Gaston: "I try to stay focus[ed] in my game. I think it's very important for me. I'm really cool outside of the court. I try to give my best in the court, and we will see the result. Of course, for the moment it's amazing for me, it's a dream. But I try to stay focus[ed]. Now I'm going to my family and my coaches to celebrate a little bit (smiling)."

Stan Wawrinka: "I think was more myself. My opponent play[ed] well all the match. He went for it I think. I wasn't as aggressive as I start[ed] the first set. I think I had many opportunities to come back in the second, to take the lead, and I was not tough with myself enough to play my game, to keep the line, and to be aggressive over and over and again and again."

Corinne Dubreuil / FFT


Trevisan saves two match points to upset Sakkari

Down 4-6 in her second set tiebreaker to 20th seed Maria Sakkari, qualifier Maria Trevisan reeled off four consecutive points to draw even with the Greek. She would fall behind a break to start their decider, but Trevisan surged to pull off the upset, 1-6, 7-6 (6), 6-3, adding to her three-set win over Coco Gauff.

As a result of getting to the second week at the clay-court Slam, the 26-year-old Italian will break into the Top 100 for the first time. In a blog post for The Owl Post, Trevisan shared she had to "re-educate" herself to eat after anorexia took her away from the sport for four years from 2010 to 2014.

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Zverev, Schwartzman take another step forward

Alexander Zverev was forced to play five sets in his previous round. Not today.

The US Open runner-up defeated Marco Cecchinato, 6-1, 7-5, 6-3, firing 10 aces to five double faults. The German improved to 2-0 against Cecchinato, adding to his first-round win at this year's Australian Open. Zverev, now 14-2 on the major stage in 2020, is aiming to get into the final eight in Paris for the third successive year. Jannik Sinner will look to prevent the No. 6 seed from doing so on Sunday.

Rome finalist Diego Schwartzman also advanced, locking up a 7-6 (3), 6-3, 6-3 victory over Norbert Gombos. Both players found themselves deep in the red with their winners-to-unforced errors ratio, with Schwartzman at -17 and Gombos at -33. The Argentine is yet to lose a set this tournament and will bid to get through to his second Roland Garros quarterfinal versus Lorenzo Sonego.

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Drama-free day for Bertens

Two days after outlasting Sara Errani, 9-7, in a dramatic final set and exiting the court in a wheelchair, No. 5 seed Kiki Bertens completed her third-round win in 58 minutes. The Dutchwoman wiped away Katerina Siniakova, 6-2, 6-2, winning 59 percent of her return points. Her next opponent is yet to be determined, after Martina Trevisan pushed Maria Sakkari into a decider after saving two match points in their second set tiebreaker.


Krejcikova upends Pironkova

Czech Barbora Krejcikova already has four major titles to her name: two in women's doubles, including 2018 Roland Garros, and two Australian Open mixed titles. 

Earlier this year, she scored her first main draw major singles win in Melbourne and is soaring to even greater heights in Paris. Having lost in the first round of qualies a year ago, Krejcikova now stands as one half of an all-unseeded matchup in the round of 16.

The 24-year-old battled past US Open quarterfinalist Tsvetana Pironkova, 5-7, 6-4, 6-3. Pironkova moved into the third round when Serena Williams withdrew from injury. World No. 114 Krejcikova will facequalifier Nadia Podoroska, a 6-3, 6-2 winner over Anna Karolina Schmiedlova, the woman who ousted Victoria Azarenka.

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SCORES: Sinner wins again; awaits Zverev-Cecchinato victor 

Teenager Jannik Sinner has not dropped a set en route to the fourth round of his maiden Roland Garros. He was down 2-5 in his third set against Federico Coria, before winning the final five games to finish off the Argentine, 6-3, 7-5, 7-5. This tournament marks Sinner's fourth appearance in the main draw of a Slam and he'll aim to extend his stay when he takes on either No. 6 seed Alexander Zverev or 2018 semifinalist Marco Cecchinato. Zverev won the first set, 6-1.

Maria Sakkari and Diego Schwartzman also jumped out to one-set leads, while Barbora Krejcikova forced a third set with Tsvetana Pironkova.

Loic Wacziak / FFT


No surprise here: Rafa walks into round of 16

An hour and 35 minutes later, 12-time champion Rafael Nadal was on his way to the lockeroom with a 6-1, 6-4, 6-0 victory in hand over Stefano Travaglia. The left-hander felt little resistance on serve in facing zero break points, freeing him up to capitalize on six of seven chances against the Italian. His career mark at Roland Garros now stands at 96-2.

For a quarterfinal berth, Nadal will meet 20-year-old American Sebastian Korda.

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UPSET: No Thiem vs. Wawrinka as Gaston stuns 2015 champ

Left-hander Hugo Gaston was the only Frenchman to get through to the third round despite never having won a tour-level match at the start of the event. Now, he's added the biggest win of his career to a week he'll remember.

The 20-year-old wild card overcame 2015 Roland Garros champion Stan Wawrinka, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-0, in three hours and 10 minutes. Working hard on the baseline in the final set, the 239th-ranked Gaston drew 12 unforced errors off his opponent's racquet and displayed fine finesse in sprinting to the finish line. Deserved chants of HU-GO! would follow as he picked up his first Top 50 win in his five-set debut.

A shot at two-time runner-up Dominic Thiem now awaits Gaston, who joined Korda in becoming the first set of ATP players born in the 2000s to reach the round of 16 at the Paris major.

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Nine set points erased, Sonego closes Fritz out after gritty tiebreaker

Lorenzo Sonego and Taylor Fritz pushed each other to the limits in a third set tie-break, playing out 36 points over a 30-minute stretch. Coming in, Sonego had erased three set points when serving at 4-5. He would wipe away six more, and after Fritz saved six match points, seven proved to be lucky for the Italian as he wrapped up a 7-6 (5), 6-3, 7-6 (17) win with a perfectly timed drop shot.

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Wild card grabs lead on Wawrinka; Nadal rolls to first set

France's Hugo Gaston has moved ahead two sets to one over 2015 winner Stan Wawrinka. The world No. 239 saved all four break points against his serve in the third set en route to replicating another set score of 6-3.

Over on Chatrier, Rafael Nadal bolted to a 6-1 lead on Stefano Travaglia. The 19-time major champion lost just six points.


Allez! Garcia back in week two

Five match points saved wasn't enough for Elise Mertens to find her way back. 

France's Caroline Garcia recovered from not shutting the door at 5-4 in the third with a trio of opportunities by breaking the Belgian in the ensuing game. (this forehand winner was the highlight)

 

Mertens would have one look at a break point, and erased two more match points, before her backhand sailed long. Garcia finished with a 1-6, 6-4, 7-5 victory after two hours and 15 minutes to set a fourth-round date with No. 3 seed Elina Svitolina.


Korda maintains momentum with dominant win

The first man born in the 2000s to reach the second week at Roland Garros is...? Sebastian Korda.

The 20-year-old, son of 1992 finalist Petr Korda has now won six matches in Paris, having made his way into the main draw after qualifying. The rain delay didn't slow him down, as he finished off Pedro Martinez in winning the final two games to complete a 6-4, 6-3, 6-1 victory. Korda struck 48 winners to 29 unforced errors and was broken just once. He'll get a taste of 12-time champion Rafael Nadal if the left-hander defeats Stefano Travaglia.

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Garcia rallies to get herself into a decider

She was blitzed in the first set, but Garcia is rallying behind the support of her home fans to make some noise on Chatrier.

The Frenchwoman grabbed the second set, 6-4, with a much greater success rate when pulling the trigger, going +4 on winners/unforced errors and coming forward to close points when possible. Garcia also regrouped nicely after seeing Mertens get on serve for 4-4, immediately breaking back and following it up by serving out the set at love.


Rain stops play on all courts but Chatrier; Mertens on fire

Sebastian Korda will have to wait to try and close out a convincing third-round win over Pedro Martinez as rain halted play around the grounds. Korda was due to serve up two sets and 4-1 on Court 7.

Under the roof on Chatrier, No. 16 seed Elise Mertens has raced out to a 6-1 advantage against home hopeful Caroline Garcia. Mertens won twice as many points in the set (28 to 14), claiming 12 of 16 points on serve. Garcia didn't help her cause in spraying 16 unforced errors.

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Thiem in favor of using replay technology on clay

In his straight-sets victory over Casper Ruud, No. 2 seed Dominic Thiem had a pair of calls go in his favor as the result of chair umpire rulings on ball marks. Hawk-Eye said otherwise, and the debate on whether the available technology should be used on the surface continues to heat up following multiple cases in Paris this week.

Speaking in his virtual press conference, Thiem shared that Ruud showed him the first instance on his phone and stated he backed implementing the technology on red dirt.

"I would support 100% Hawk-Eye on clay, because at the match [with] Denis against Roberto yesterday there was a mistake, and then today in my match there was a mistake in my favor, actually," he said.

"I mean, it's not the umpire's mistake, because sometimes you just cannot see the mark. It's too difficult, especially after the set break, because they clean the court, they brush the lines, so it's almost impossible to see where the mark starts. So I think it would be fair for everybody if Hawk-Eye would also exist on clay [and] we should make it happen."


Simona serves Halepenos for everyone to consume

Fifty-four minutes. That's all Simona Halep needed to dispatch Amanda Anisimova, 6-0, 6-1, to exact revenge on the American teenager for last year's quarterfinal defeat.

Halep played a clean ground game, finishing with 15 winners and seven unforced errors, while converting six of her 11 break point chances. 

"I played much better than last year," Halep told Jon Werthiem. "I knew that I had to change some things. "Today it worked really well. I did it and I'm really thankful with the match I played.

"When I lose a match, I go back and analyze it, checking what I did wrong so I can do better the next time when I play against her. I felt motivated to show myself I can win this match."

The 2018 champion's pre-tournament favorite status just went up another level or two after her week one, dropping just 12 games across six sets.

In the round of 16, the Romanian gets a replay of her 2019 fourth-round win against Iga Swiatek. The Pole managed to put up just a single game last year, but has made great strides on tour since that experience.

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Wawrinka-Gaston split sets; Korda in command

He got off to a roaring start, but 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka finds himself locked in a battle with the last Frenchman standing, Hugo Gaston. Wawrinka won the first set, 6-2, before Gaston hit back to take the second, 6-3.

American qualifier Sebastian Korda is a set away from the fourth round. The 20-year-old leads Pedro Martinez, 6-4, 6-3. His countryman Taylor Fritz, is down a set and a break to Lorenzo Sonego.


All about Halep

World No. 2 Simona Halep couldn't have asked for a better start against Amanda Anisimova. In a rematch of their 2019 quarterfinal encounter, which saw the teen win in straight sets, the No. 1 seed posted a bagel against Anisimova in just 23 minutes.

Anismova went 0 for 5 on break points and was winless on seven second serve points.


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After slow start, Thiem serves up clinic to dismiss Ruud

The first set could have gone either way, though after Dominic Thiem tipped the scale to win it over Casper Ruud, the rest of the match was all his.

Finding his rhythm in sets two and three, Thiem's weight of shot and court control proved to be too much for the 21-year-old. Game, set, match Thiem: 6-4, 6-3, 6-1, after two hours and 15 minutes. With Stan Wawrinka looming as a round-of-16 opponent if the Swiss advances later on the day, Thiem should be thrilled to have a full tank of gas at his disposal come Sunday. This year's fall conditions so far are playing into the Austrian's favor.

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Women's third seed marches on

In her last two Roland Garros appearances, Elina Svitolina was eliminated in the third round. She made sure that didn't happen again Friday.

The No. 3 seed topped No. 25 seed Ekaterina Alexandrova, 6-4, 7-5, saving four of the five break points she faced to reach the round of 16 in Paris for the fourth time. Svitolina, aiming to improve upon two quarterfinal showings in 2015 and 2017, can give herself a chance to do that if she first gets past the winner of No. 16 seed Elise Mertens and France's Caroline Garcia.

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Swiatek sizzles in third-round win

Thirty winners, 15 unforced errors. Ten trips to the net, nine points taken. 19 of 22 second-serve return points won.

You could say Iga Swiatek secured the bag in defeating Eugenie Bouchard, 6-3, 6-2, and she's back in the fourth round for a second year in a row.

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It wouldn't be a day at RG without a ball mark squabble

"You know we just started the set, there should not be two marks in the same place."

A solid argument from Casper Ruud, who comes out on the losing end of a ball mark selected by the chair umpire after the Norwegian stopped his point against Dominic Thiem. Instead of ad-in, it was ad-out. Ruud would save the break point, but was later broken by the second seed.


Svitolina, Swiatek in front; Thiem claims first set

There were no breaks of serve in the first set between Elina Svitolina and Ekaterina Alexandrova until the 10th game. There, Svitolina created a 0-40 opening, jumping on her first chance to seal the set, 6-4.

Iga Swiatek came out firing against Eugenie Bouchard, striking 20 winners (to just seven unforced errors) to take a 6-3 lead. Swiatek advanced to the round of 16 here last year, losing to Simona Halep, and potentially could face the Romanian again in that stage depending how today shakes out.

In just under an hour, Dominic Thiem closed out an uneven set, 6-4, versus No. 28 seed Casper Ruud. Both will look to clean up their hitting after each finished with a -6 differential.


First set of Thiem-Ruud a rollercoaster so far

From 40-0 up, Dominic Thiem was broken, then immediately broke Casper Ruud back in the fifth game. The topsy-turvy run continued with a 10-minute plus game, where Thiem saved three more break points and pulled off a 104 m.p.h. backhand in the process. The Austrian would hold, then break to move ahead 4-3.


Chatrier full of intriguing clashes

Happy Friday! Players at Roland Garros have reaching the second week in sight, as third-round action begins. And boy are there some fine matchups to look out for.

Two-time defending finalist Dominic Thiem faces No. 28 seed Casper Ruud for the first time on tour. The US Open champion is yet to drop a set, while Ruud needed five to advance past Tommy Paul. The Norwegian is 17-4 this season on clay... will he be able to provide any resistance, or is Thiem's arsenal of shotmaking going to prove too much for the 21-year-old? The roof will be closed for this one, which begins with the temperature hovering around 55 degrees.

Immediately following, 2018 women's champion Simona Halep squares off against No. 25 seed Amanda Anisimova in a rematch of last year's quarterfinals. The re, Anisimova stunned the Romanian in straight sets and had eventual winner Ashleigh Barty on the ropes in the semifinals. Halep is riding a 16-match win streak and picked up two clay-court titles since the WTA restarted in August.

Philippe Montigny / FFT

Caroline Garcia battles No. 16 seed Elise Mertens, as she looks to keep home interest alive. Garcia has won both of their prior meetings, though this is their first encounter on clay. After winning five games in her return at Palermo on August 4, Mertens has gone 17-4.

Second seed Rafael Nadal continues his quest for his 13th event crown to wrap up the day on Chatrier versus Stefano Travaglia in a first-time meeting. The Spaniard claimed his 95th victory in 97 matches at the Paris major when he dismissed Mackenzie McDonald in the second round.

Elsewhere, 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka could meet Thiem in a mouth-watering clash should both win today. Wawrinka plays 20-year-old wild card Hugo Gaston, before No. 6 seed Alexander Zverev meets 2018 semifinalist Marco Cecchinato.

What will Kiki Bertens have left after her dramatic three-set win over Sara Errani? We'll find out when the fifth seed clashes with Katerina Siniakova, who took out Naomi Osaka in the third round here last year. Meanwhile, Iga Swiatek and Eugenie Bouchard both look to extend their runs in the first match on Court Simonne-Mathieu, plus Americans Taylor Fritz and Sebastian Korda each take on unseeded foes.