Djokovic, Serena move closer to career milestones with semifinal wins
A recap of the semifinals action on Friday at the French Open in Paris, including results, tweets, hot shots, photos and more.
Garbiñe Muguruza is into her first French Open final with a 6–2, 6–4 win over No. 21-seed Sam Stosur in 76 minutes on Friday.
Muguruza raced out to a quick lead against 2010 finalist Stosur and wrapped up the first set in 32 minutes. In the second set, Muguruza served two aces to bring up match point and won in 76 minutes. With the win, Muguruza became the first Spanish woman to reach the French Open singles final since Conchita Martinez in 2000.
The 2016 French Open final will be a rematch of the 2015 Wimbledon title match, as Muguruza will face No. 1 Serena Williams after she defeated Kiki Bertens 7–6(7), 6–4. Saturday’s match will be Serena’s fourth Roland Garros final.
Both players had to fight through less than ideal weather conditions and nagging injuries during the match. Serena found herself in an early hole against No. 58 Bertens, who was playing in her first Grand Slam semifinal, but managed to find a way to elevated her level and defeat Bertens to reach her 27th major final. Serena will once again try to tie Steffi Graf's mark of 22 Grand Slam titles on Saturday.
• Novak Djokovic is back into the final at Roland Garros, where he'll have another chance to win the only Grand Slam trophy that he has yet to claim in his career. The World No. 1 defeated No. 13-seed Dominic Thiem 6–2, 6–1, 6–4 in the semifinals on Friday. Djokovic's win marked his 27th-straight Grand Slam victory and puts him one match win away from holding all four Slams.
"Best performance of the tournament," Djokovic said of his win on Friday, "As I was hoping after the long fourth round that I'm going to start playing better as the tournament progresses, and that's what's happening now. So I'm very pleased with the way things are going."
Djokovic jumped out to a quick 3-0 start, but the 22-year-old Austrian fought back to level the first set at 3-all. But the Serb proved to be too much for Thiem, ultimately prevailing in straight sets in just 90 minutes.
"I think he played really well today, but I also think that sometimes—or mostly throughout the match—I made it maybe a little bit too easy for him, too many mistakes," Thiem said after the match, his first Grand Slam semifinal. "It's tough against him. He doesn't give you any presents. Return is unbelievable. It was already the problem yesterday that I didn't get any free points with the serve. Then if you have to play basically every game without serve, without the advantage of serve, it's going to be unbelievably tough against him."
With his run to the semifinals in Paris, Thiem will break into the Top 10, at No. 7, when the new rankings come out on Monday.
• In the other men's semifinals match, Andy Murray advanced to his first-ever French Open final, beating defending champion Stan Wawrinka in four sets, 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, on Court Philippe Chatrier.
"....to reach the finals of the French the first time, that's a big moment for me. It's not an easy thing to do," Murray said after the match. "Like I said, a few years ago, I never really expected to be able to do that. To play the way that I did today after a tough start to the tournament, yeah, was just really, really happy with that."
No. 2-seed Murray fought through two tough five-set matches in the opening rounds, beating Radek Stepanak and Mathias Bourgue to advance. With Friday's win, Murray becomes the first British player to make the final in Paris since Bunny Austin in 1937.
Hot shots of the Day
Tweets of the Day
Djokovic beats Thiem, returns to the French Open final--and the zebras, at long last, are extinct.— Tom Perrotta (@TomPerrotta) June 3, 2016
Immigration entering Holland:— Genie Bouchard (@geniebouchard) June 3, 2016
Him: Purpose of trip?
Me: Tennis tournament
Him: Oh, shouldn't you still be in Paris then?
The Day in Photos
Daily Data Viz
Each day, SI and IBM will bring you data-driven infographics based on the top storylines and stats from Roland Garros. Click the image to view the graphic.
With their play thus far at Roland Garros, semifinalists Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka are mirror images of each other.
This post will be updated.