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Svitolina sends Ivanovic packing

By The Assam Tribune

PARIS, May 28: Ukrainian Elina Svitolina reached the fourth round of the French Open tennis tournament with a straight set win over former champion Ana Ivanovic here on Saturday.

In seven previous meetings, including two at the French Open, Svitolina had taken just one set from the 16th ranked Ivanovic, but she turned the tables in impressive fashion to triumph 6-4, 6-4.

�I think it was better mentality than other matches before, the other seven matches,� Svitolina said after winning on Court 1.

�And the game, I was really confident today. I don�t know. Just everything was right. Today I was doing right things. Even missing bad shots, I was trying to stay positive and to play my tennis.�

�I think it was working really well today and I was really happy that I could stay in such a high level against her and still having in my mind that I�m 0-7 down. And it was tough, but I�m really happy that I could finish the match in two sets,� the World No. 20 added.

The 18th seed capitalised on a couple of forehand errors from Ivanovic to close out the first set, then turned the screws by building a 4-1 lead in the second set.

Ivanovic drew level but faltered on serve once again, allowing Svitolina to advance to the fourth round.

Dominic Thiem confirmed his status as an outsider to win 6-7 (4/7), 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 in third round over German teenager Alexander Zverev.

In what was a clash of two of the sport�s rising new stars, the Austrian dropped a tight first set, but then coasted away from his 19-year-old opponent.

He will next play Spain�s Marcel Granollers, who reached the last 16 without hitting a ball after nine-time champion Rafael Nadal withdrew due to a wrist injury.

If he wins that, it will be the first time that 22-year-old Thiem has reached the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam tournament.

�It�s been the third match in the last four weeks between us and it was really tough, but I knew that from the start already,� he said.

�It was my first match on one of the big stadiums (at Roland Garros) and it was packed. An unbelievable experience.�

Thiem went into the match having won the most matches (22) on clay so far this season, including two titles at Buenos Aires and Nice, hoisting him to a career-best 13th in the world rankings in March.

He struggled early on to cope with the baseline power-hitting of Zverev, but his claycourt skills started to unsettle the towering German.

Thiem failed to convert three set points in the 12th game, however, setting up a tie-breaker that Zverev won after taking the first four points.

That setback only served to fire up the Austrian, a former junior world No.2, as he started to put more power into his groundstrokes.

He took the second set 6-3 and then broke Zverev in the third game of the second to take control of the match.

Zverev, bidding to become the youngest player to reach the last 16 at Roland Garros in 10 years, tried to attack the net in the fourth set but Thiem was too solid from the baseline, grabbing the break he needed in the fourth game.

In the women�s tournament there were early wins for eighth seed Timea Bacsinszky of Switzerland, Spain�s Carla Suarez Navarro and Kazakhstan�s Yulia Putintseva, who reached the last 16 of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time. � Agencies

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