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Thiem Runs Out Of Steam, But Marathon Vs. Schwartzman Doesn’t Change The Roland Garros Schedule

By Ricky Dimon

Dominic Thiem admitted throughout this French Open that he was running on fumes. After all, it is not easy to recover mentally or physically so soon after a maiden Grand Slam final.

In the end, Thiem wasn’t kidding that his gas tank had him running on empty.

The U.S. Open champion put forth a valiant effort during his quarterfinal match on Tuesday, just two days after outlasing Hugo Gaston in five sets, but it was not enough against a red-hot Diego Schwartzman. After five hours and eight minutes, Shwartzman prevailed 7-6(1), 5-7, 6-7(6), 7-6(5), 6-2.

Dominic Thiem of Austria (R) and Diego Schwartzman of Argentina during their men’s quarter final match during the French Open.

“To be honest, I was over the limit today,” Thiem said. “But if I would have won, maybe I would have recovered. Even though I’m physically and mentally on the edge, you never know in a slam. Especially tomorrow and Thursday off, two full days to recover. You never know what’s happening.

“But at the end I gave everything that I had out there. It was an amazing match–I think the first in my career over five hours. Diego fully deserves it. It’s fine.”

“As I said, we both gave 100 percent in the match. I’m super disappointed that I lost, that I didn’t make the semis this year. But at the same time I’m happy for him. He really deserves it. It’s an amazing achievement by him to break into the top 10 for the first time in the career. I’m happy for him. Maybe to lose against a friend hurts a little bit less.”

Diego Schwartzman reacts after winning against Dominic Thiem.

“I think I [am] lucky because now I have two days free,” Schwartzman explained. “I have a good situation about the recovery after the matches. I feel in a good way. Before this match I was doing a great job winning in three sets. That’s why it’s very important to win when you have the opportunity in three sets because when in five sets, you have to have the fuel tank full.

“I was perfect today. I think after two days I’m going to be perfect in (the) semifinals.”

That is where the Argentine will run into Rafael Nadal, whom he upset at the Rome Masters earlier in this clay-court swing. Nadal finished off Jannik Sinner 7-6(4), 6-4, 6-1 in the nightcap that ended at 1:25 a.m.

Which brings us to the schedule.

There were five matches scheduled for Court Philippe-Chatrier on Tuesday–one more than usual because the Danielle Collins vs. Ons Jabeur fourth-round match was postponed from Monday. It was a perfectly decent day outside (at least by Roland Garros standards), so at least one of those matches could have been moved to Suzanne-Lenglen given that Thiem vs. Schwartzman lasted more than five hours. Instead, with all other courts sitting idle, they left both Iga Swiatek vs. Martina Trevisan and Nadal vs. Sinner on Chatrier.

Sure, 1:25 a.m. is not that late by U.S. Open or French Open standards. But at the French Open, of course, it sets an all-time record for a late finish. And with rain threatening, there was no reason not to move one of the last two singles matches to Lenglen.

Whatever the case, tournament organizers got lucky and all the matches got finished before it got super late. That is thanks to Nadal getting the job done in straights…and no thanks to Thiem and Schwartzman!

Rafael Nadal of Spain reacts after winning against Jannik Sinner.

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