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There Is Crying In Tennis: Wawrinka Sinks Tsitsipas After Five Hours At French Open

Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland reacts after winning against Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece their men’s round of 16 match during the French Open tennis tournament at Roland Garros in Paris, France, 02 June 2019. EPA-EFE/CAROLINE BLUMBERG
By Ricky Dimon
You quite often see tears–for better or worse–upon the conclusion of a Grand Slam. Following a fourth-round match, however? Not so much.
But tears there were after Stan Wawrinka outlasted Stefanos Tsitsipas 7-6(6), 5-7, 6-4, 3-6, 8-6 in a five-hour and eight-minute slugfest that decided a quarterfinal spot in the French Open on Sunday afternoon.
“I feel exhausted,” a distraught Tsitsipas said in his press conference, during which he struggled to answer any question with more than a few words. “I don’t know; never experienced something like this in my life. I feel very disappointed at the end.
“(It’s been a) long time that…long time since I cried after a match. So emotionally, (it) wasn’t easy to handle.”
The 20-year-old Greek was left ruing a boatload of missed opportunities. He converted only five of 27 break-point chances, going 0-for-8 in the fifth set. While Wawrinka constantly struggled to hold serve throughout the decider, Tsitsipas held with ease time and time again.
That was until he toed the line at 6-7. Wawrinka erred with a return on his first match point at 15-40, but he capitalized on the next one with a slicing, curving backhand passing shot that landed on the outside of the sideline for a dramatic clinching winner.
“Today we saw only one centimeter can change the winner,” the 34-year-old Swiss commented. “I think he would have deserved as much as me to win the match today. It’s for sure a tough loss for him, but it was something that was big battle.”
It was, without question, the biggest battle of this tournament and perhaps the biggest of the entire year in tennis.
So don’t blame Tsitsipas for sobbing.

Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.

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