Novak Djokovic survived a scare on Friday when he eventually defeated Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman in the third round of the 2017 French Open. Djokovic found himself trailing by a set twice in the match but the defending French Open Champion was able to escape from the jaws of a defeat to beat the unseeded Argentine 5-7, 6-3, 3-6, 6-1, 6-1 to advance to the next round.
The second seeded Serbian looked far from his best but did enough, including ranting on the umpire after being slapped with a code violation warning, to progress to the fourth round of the French Open. Two consecutive 6-1 wins in the final two sets enable Djokovic to overcome a troubling encounter against Schwartzman on Philippe Chatrier court.
A flurry of commanding breaks finally established his control in the contest and the Serb recovered twice from a deficit to clinch his place in the Round of 16 of the 2017 French Open. Djokovic praised his opponent and admitted that the Argentine was the better player of the two for the first three sets, during which he committed a staggering 42 unforced errors, but was satisfied with his effort to pull back through with the win.
“Before the match I felt well. I was optimistic and I had played two good matches in the tournament. I expected a difficult game with a lot of baseline exchanges so congratulations to a big battle to Diego because he played well” said Djokovic post the grueling five-set encounter.
With this win, Djokovic moved to joint third all-time in the list for most wins at the Roland Garros. It was the 2016 French Open winner’s 58th win at the second Grand Slam of the year. Djokovic will need to rediscover his best version along with composure and quality in the next round which will bring tougher opposition in his way.
Djokovic will face France’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas on Sunday in the Round of 16. Ramos-Vinolas overcame another Frenchman in a match that also went the distance when he defeated Lucas Pouille 6-2 3-6 5-7 6-2 6-1.