Sports

Thiem for a change? Or same old Nadal script?

Thiem for a change? Or same old Nadal script?

Dominic Thiem and Rafael Nadal meet in the final of the 2018 tennis French Open.

Rafael Nadal celebrates a point against Juan Martin Del Potro in the French Open semifinals on June 8.

After struggling in his quarterfinal against Diego Schwartzman, Nadal is approaching his best form ahead of the final and hopes are high that the Spanish star will emerge victorious.

"When you're playing against the best player in the world and you have a few opportunities and you don't seize these opportunities, you have to wait for them to come back", the fifth seed - who seemed to be bothered by a hip problem in the match - told the media.

"You know when you start the clay-court season that Dominic, he's one of these players that have the chance to win every tournament that he's playing", Nadal said, "and maybe even (more so) here in Roland Garros, because he's strong physically". "That's why I got angry with someone. He was a little unfortunate", said Nadal who reeled off 14 of the last 17 games, having seen Del Potro fail to convert any of his seven break points. He will be wary of Thiem, who is the only man to defeat him on clay in the last two years.

True, he was obliterated by Nadal in the semi-final 12 months ago but Thiem has added more aggression to his natural claycourt weapons, specifically the forehand, as he displayed when stunning Nadal in the Madrid quarter-final. I have to play my best. "Being in a final here is something I should rejoice about and be happy about", he said. If I had won that break, we could have played a longer match.

Seventh seed Thiem is the first Austrian to make a final at the majors since Thomas Muster was champion in Paris in 1995. "I can say a lot of things, but the easiest answer and the real answer is to play well".

Nadal has won six of his nine matches against Thiem, all of them coming on that famously hard red clay. "I never dreamed in 2005 when I played my first final here that I would be in another one". The second set like, the first was dominated by serve until Cilic fired himself up to break at 4-4 - a furious Del Potro throwing his racket at the changeover.

More news: Mitch McConnell cancels bulk of Senate's August recess

His opponent Friday will be Juan Martin del Potro, who got choked up after waiting almost a decade to return to the final four in Paris - and dealing with three wrist operations in the interim.

"I am a human person", Nadal said following his 4-6 6-3 6-2 6-2 victory. Del Potro has achieved great victories this year.

Thiem was quick to respond, reeling off the next three games to take the set in 46 minutes.

"But I'm also aware that here it's tougher".

In 2016, Cecchinato was accused of match-fixing and suspended for 18 months, but he appealed, and his punishment was dropped on a technicality. Nadal has also won six of his last eight grand slam final appearances and is 10-0 in French Open final appearances.

"He's been a very complex opponent, and one of the best players in the world on this surface".

His huge serve helped him to save set points too and he finally gained the upper hand to take a two-set lead.

Thiem sent Cecchinato scurrying around the court before breaking decisively for a 6-5 lead with a lovely forehand victor.


  • India strikes river, rice deals with China as relations thaw

    India strikes river, rice deals with China as relations thaw

    This 18th edition of SCO will be India's first participation in the summit as a full-time member of the organisation. The next Modi-Xi meeting would take place in South Africa in July on the sidelines of the BRICS summit, he said.
    Del Potro sets up French Open semifinal match against Nadal

    Del Potro sets up French Open semifinal match against Nadal

    The win for Halep also means she will not lose hold of her world number one ranking, no matter what happens in the next game. The loss of the second set clearly had a negative effect of Stephens, who began to show signs of frustration on court.
    American Soldier Killed In Somalia

    American Soldier Killed In Somalia

    The U.S. troops were there to provide advice, assistance and aerial surveillance, the statement explained. Names of the soldiers were not immediately released, while next of kin were notified.
  • Danny Welbeck: Marcus Rashford

    Danny Welbeck: Marcus Rashford "free to play" for England

    However, the Three Lions could not add any more goals to their tally for the first stanza and took a 1-0 lead into the break. With Jesse Lingard looking a nailed-on starter, the person who Rashford could replace would be Raheem Sterling or Dele Alli.
    Yahoo Messenger Gets A July 17 Execution Date

    Yahoo Messenger Gets A July 17 Execution Date

    Yahoo said the company will focus "on building and introducing new, exciting communications tools that better fit consumer needs". Yahoo! has announced that on July 17, it will officially shut down its long-running Messenger client and service.
    After days of insults, Trump and Trudeau pal around at G7

    After days of insults, Trump and Trudeau pal around at G7

    That move was met with criticism at home, including from Republicans , and announcements of retaliatory tariffs from USA allies. The Prime Minister's Office issued a response shortly after, stating that Trudeau has been consistent with Trump.
  • Taliban leaders declare Eid ceasefire with Afghan forces

    Taliban leaders declare Eid ceasefire with Afghan forces

    He added that eight Taliban attackers were killed and more than a dozen others were wounded during the gun battle. He said there was a report of a single Taliban casualty but the group has not commented.
    Prince Harry, Meghan Markle attend Queen’s birthday celebrations

    Prince Harry, Meghan Markle attend Queen’s birthday celebrations

    Although Queen Elizabeth already turned 92 on April 21, the royals understandably prefer to party and socialize in warmer weather. Colours, or flags, were carried, or "trooped", down the rank so that they could be seen and recognised by the soldiers.
    Battlefield V will have battle royale

    Battlefield V will have battle royale

    Oversaturation of the market isn't good for anyone, and it looks like that's where we might be headed, going forward. Today EA announced more details for DICE's Battlefield V title, the first-person shooter set in WWII.
  • U.S.  is a 'piggybank everyone is robbing', says Trump at G7

    U.S. is a 'piggybank everyone is robbing', says Trump at G7

    The G7, or "Group of Seven", is now made up of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Italy, Germany, and Japan. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau did not wait for the US president to kick off the meeting in La Malbaie, Quebec.
    Possibility of peace treaty at Trump-Kim summit offers hopes - and fears

    Possibility of peace treaty at Trump-Kim summit offers hopes - and fears

    When asked what he was doing to prepare, the president said he doesn't have to "prepare very much". Trump on Saturday doubled down on his promise that the U.S.
    Recalled melon linked to 60 illnesses was distributed in NC, officials say

    Recalled melon linked to 60 illnesses was distributed in NC, officials say

    Those who bought the melon are advised to throw it away or return them to the stores where they were purchased for a refund. Symptoms of salmonella include diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria.