Novak Djokovic, Dominic Thiem French Open Semi-Final Suspended in 3rd Set

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistJune 7, 2019

PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 07: Novak Djokovic of Serbia plays a forehand during his mens singles semi-final match against Dominic Thiem of Austria during Day thirteen of the 2019 French Open at Roland Garros on June 07, 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Clive Mason/Getty Images

Novak Djokovic and Dominic Thiem will resume their 2019 French Open semi-final on Saturday after persistent rain and heavy winds led to their match being suspended in the third set. Thiem will start with a 3-1 lead in the set after winning the first 6-2 and losing the second 6-3.

Djokovic and Thiem started their match in tricky weather conditions, as the wind made it hard to accurately place groundstrokes and the threat of rain hung over the stadium.

The Austrian seemed to deal with the conditions best and won the first break of the match in just the third game, but the umpire soon halted proceedings:

George Bellshaw @BellshawGeorge

They're waiting for about 'three or four' minutes to see if Djokovic and Thiem can resume, according to the umpire...

When play resumed, the pattern of the first set held. Thiem, who has become something of a clay expert over the years, seemed far more comfortable in the rallies, while Djokovic got more emotional as the set wore on.

Down a double break at 5-2, he called for the supervisor, determined to get play suspended. Per tennis writer Carole Bouchard, he was told to continue:

Carole Bouchard @carole_bouchard

Djokovic has supervisor on court.

Carole Bouchard @carole_bouchard

And supervisor tells him that yes they're gonna have to play in that tornado

Thiem easily served out the set, winning the first 6-2.

Djokovic made a better start to the second set, and both players held serve for five straight games. With Thiem on serve, the heavy rains finally arrived, and play was suspended with Djokovic leading 3-2.

There was hope the delay would be a short one:

Live Tennis @livetennis

Play suspended due to rain. #Thiem leads 6-2 2-3 (30-0), on serve in the second set. #Djokovic and #Thiem leave the court as the rain begins to fall in Paris. We understand it should be just a short delay... Fingers crossed... https://t.co/f2jYQEEmne

When play resumed, Djokovic came out firing, having fully regained his composure. He secured a crucial break in the eighth game before serving out the set in the ninth.

It was turning into an excellent contest:

Graham Ruthven @grahamruthven

Y'all thought Federer-Nadal was the main event today when Djokovic-Thiem is where it's at.

Thiem started mixing in more power strokes in the third set, and it yielded results in the fourth game when he bagged a break, despite struggling with what appeared to be dust in his eyes.

Tennis writer Ben Rothenberg had a suggestion:

Ben Rothenberg @BenRothenberg

Somebody get these boys some goggles. #RG19

The match was suspended again after that break, and after a lengthy delay, the decision was made to move the rest of the match to Saturday.