Last Updated: 02/10/20 4:37pm
Dominic Thiem rated his latest French Open victory over Casper Ruud as “one of the best of the season” as he reached the fourth round at Roland Garros.
The US Open champion has yet to drop a set at Roland Garros and recovered from a slow start to beat Norwegian Ruud 6-4 6-3 6-1.
Thiem trailed 3-1 in the opening set and was under pressure in nearly all his service games, but weathered the storm to make it 10 Grand Slam victories in a row.
The Austrian said: “I think that he was playing well from beginning to the end basically. I really raised my level. Maybe the first four games were not as good as the rest of the match by me, but he’s a really good player, especially on clay, probably one of the best of the season.
“I guess if we give him one more year, then he’s going to be super-dangerous.
“Here in Roland Garros I think that also the wet, slow conditions suited me a little bit more than him. But in general I was super-happy with my performance. I think it was one of the best ones this year.”
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Ruud, 21, was bidding to become only the second Norwegian to reach the fourth round of a Grand Slam. The first was his father and coach, Christian Ruud, at the Australian Open in 1997.
He has won more clay-court matches than any other player in 2020 and he was unfortunate to run into Thiem so early in the tournament.
“He played some clutch shots on the clutch points and he shows how good of a clay-court player he is and fighter he is,” said Ruud.
“It was a tough first set. It was a long first set. It was tough losing it. And when you lose the first set to such a good clay-court player, it’s tough to get back.”
Thiem, 27, who won his maiden Grand Slam title in New York last month, will next meet the winner of the match between former French Open champion Stan Wawrinka and local hope Hugo Gaston.