Zverev survives French Open epic as Djokovic eyes Federer record for Grand Slam wins

Alexander Zverev came back from the brink of defeat to reach the French Open last 16 for a seventh successive year on Saturday as Novak Djokovic took aim at equalling Roger Federer's record for Grand Slam match wins.

World number four Zverev, who effectively ended Rafael Nadal's Roland Garros career in the first round, came through against Tallon Griekspoor 3-6, 6-4, 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (10/3) despite trailing the Dutchman 1-4 in the decider.

Read more‘King of Clay’ Nadal knocked out by Zverev in possible French Open farewell

The 27-year-old German, who is playing under the shadow of an ongoing trial in Berlin over allegations of assaulting an ex-girlfriend, stayed on course for a last-four showdown with defending champion Djokovic.

"Incredible match, incredible player. He's unbelievably dangerous. I always struggle against him," said Zverev after the four hour, 14-minute marathon.

Djokovic, chasing a fourth title at Roland Garros and 25th career major, will go level with Federer on 369 Grand Slam match wins if he sees off Italian 30th seed Lorenzo Musetti in the night match.

Djokovic has defeated Musetti four times in five meetings.

Djokovic arrived in Paris having not won a title or even reached a final in the season for the first time since 2018.


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