Novak Djokovic suffered a shock exit at the hands of the unseeded Marco Cecchinato in the 2018 French Open quarter-finals. Djokovic was knocked out in four sets by his Italian opponent who had gone into the tournament as a 72nd-ranked player.
The 2016 French Open champion and a former world number one, Djokovic went down 3-6, 6-7, 6-1, 6-7 to the unseeded player as he looked to return back to his best after having had a rough previous couple of years on the circuit due to a variety of reasons.
Later Djokovic said he might look to take a break from the grass court season.
On the other hand, it was arguably the best day of Cecchinato’s career. Before making it to his first ever Grand Slam semi-final, Cecchinato’s best ever performance at a Major was qualifying for the first round of the 2015 US Open, 2016 Australian Open, French Open and 2017 Wimbledon.
In fact by reaching the semi-final at Roland-Garros, he increased his career prize money winnings by more than 60% at the very least.
The 31-year-old Djokovic saved three match-points but had three set-points of his own in the fourth set before he went down in the match. The 25-year-old Cecchinato will now take on Austria’s Dominic Thiem in the semi-final who has also never made it to the final of a Grand Slam before this.
Thiem made it to his third Roland Garros final four stage after beating the much fancied Alexander Zverev in straight sets. However, it was an injury that hindered Zverev in the match.
Cecchinato has been banned for match-fixing in 2016 but that sentence was overturned.
In the other two quarter-finals which were played today at the French Open, Madison Keys needed just two sets to send Yulia Putintseva packing, while Sloane Stephens dropped only four games in the decimation of Daria Kasatkina and make the semi-finals.