As it happened: Djokovic vs Thiem; Barty vs Vondrousova

Earlier, Dominic Thiem beat Novak Djokovic to set up a second successive Roland-Garros final against Rafael Nadal.

Marketa Vondrousova and Ashleigh Barty pose for the cameras before their French Open women's singles final on Saturday.   -  Getty Images

Hello and welcome to Sportstar's LIVE blog of the 2019 French Open's penultimate day

 

9:13pm: Ashleigh Barty is the 2019 French Open champion. She beats Marketa Vondrousova 6-1, 6-3 in an hour and 10 minutes.

Barty broke out as a doubles star in 2013, reaching three Grand Slam finals at age 16 and 17. But she took a sabbatical from tennis in 2015 in order to not burn out. The Australian returned to the courts after a season of playing cricket in Australia’s Women’s Big Bash League and the Women’s National Cricket League. She won her first Grand Slam doubles title in her fifth final at the 2018 US Open, and then she reached her first Major quarterfinals in singles at the Australian Open earlier this year.

Marketa Vondrousova's dream run ends, taking with it her chance to become the first teenage Grand Slam singles winner since Rafael Nadal at the 2005 French Open and female teenage Grand Slam singles winner since 2004, when Maria Sharapova won Wimbledon and Svetlana Kuznetsova won the US Open.

9:12pm: Barty has match point on the Vondrousova serve.

9:07pm: Ash Barty is one game away from the title. She leads 6-1, 5-3.

9:04pm: Vonrousova holds serve. Barty to serve at 4-3.

9:01pm: Barty holds serve for a 4-2 lead.

8:55pm: Barty holds serve for 3-1 in second set.

8:52pm: Vondrousova saves two break points on her way to holding serve for the first time in the match.

8:46pm: Barty staves off a break point to hold for 2-0 in the second.

8:37pm: Break point for Barty in the opening game of the second set. And she breaks.

8:31pm: Ash Barty wins the first set 6-1 in 28 minutes. She's halfway to the title.

Vondrousova did not hold her serve in that set. And she had just two winners to Barty's 13 in the set.

The opening set saw the Australian mix up her game. Slices, angles, dropshots, lobs. Just smart thinking on court. She sure has variety, but will that help the diminutive 23-year-old against tall, hard-hitting players like world No. 1 Naomi Osaka, Petra Kvitova, Karolina Pliskova, et al in the grass and hard courts seasons that will take up the rest of the year.

8:30pm: Barty has two set points on her own serve.

8:28pm: Ash Barty breaks Marketa Vondrousova for a 5-1 lead and will serve for the opening set.

8:27pm: Barty sends an attempted dropshot into the net. Deuce. Oh! Break point No. 4 immediately.

8:26pm: Vondrousova claws one back. She claws two back.

8:24pm: Barty now has three break points on the Vondrousova serve.

8:22pm: A double fault gives Vondrousova a third break point. And she breaks for her first game of the match. Barty leads 4-1 in the first set.

8:21pm: Deuce.

8:20pm: A second break point for Vondrousova.

8:19pm: Barty's all-round game is on full display. But Vondrousova get a break point now. And deuce.

8:16pm: And Barty breaks against. She's 4-0 up.

8:15pm: Another break point for Barty. But that's saved too.

And now a third.

8:14pm: A break point for Barty at 30-40. But she hits that into the net.

8:10pm: Barty holds to love. She's up 3-0 in just seven minutes.

8:08pm: Vondrousova double-faults to give Barty two break points. The Australian take the game on the second for an early 2-0.

8:04pm: Barty serves an ace to hold serve in the first game of the women's singles final.

8:00pm: The women's singles final is about to begin.

We have two first-time finalists at Roland Garros.

Ashleigh Barty of Australia, the 23-year-old world No. 8, will move up to No. 2 if she wins.

Marketa Vondrousova is aiming to become the first teenager to win a Grand Slam since Rafael Nadal captured his first French Open title in 2005 and the first female teenager since Maria Sharapova on Wimbledon and Svetlana Kuznetsova won the US Open in 2004. The 19-year-old will move up from world No. 38 to 12 if she takes the title.

7:37pm: Next up on Court Philippe-Chatrier: the women's singles final between Ash Barty and Marketa

7:33pm: Dominic Thiem beats Novak Djokovic to reach his second straight French Open final.

Final score: 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 7-5 to the Austrian world No. 4.

Thiem will play his second straight final at Roland-Garros against 11-time winner Rafael Nadal, who beat Roger Federer in straight sets on Friday.

Djokovic was looking to emulate Australian great Rod Laver, who won the calendar year Grand Slam once in the Open era and prior to that – in 1962 and 1969.

The Serbian world No. 1 had chance to do that in 2015, but was beaten in the final by Stan Wawrinka. He won the other three Majors that year. But he went on to hold all four when he won the Australian Open and French Open in 2016 – completing what’s called the ‘Djoker Slam.’

7:32pm:  Match point No. 3 for Thiem!

7:31pm: Deuce No. 2.

7:30pm: Deuce.

7:29pm: 30-all with Djokovic serving to stay in the match.

7:25pm: Thiem holds to love to lead 6-5 in the deciding set.

7:23pm: Thiem thinks he has a winner for deuce. But the chair umpire correctly rules the ball out. 5-all in the fith.

7:18pm: That's the four-hour mark.

7:17pm: Djokovic breaks Thiem and will serve at 4-5 in the fifth set.

Thiem had two match points in that last game.

7:16pm: Deuce. Nerves for Thiem?

Break point for Djokovic.

7:15pm: Dominic Thiem has two match points!

7:12pm: Thiem has a break point! Dominic Thiem breaks Novak Djokovic! The Austrian will serve for the match at 5-3!

7:07pm: Djokovic get a second break point. And he gets the break when Thiem sends a backhand lob just long. It's back on serve in the fifth set. Djokovic serves at 3-4.

7:06pm: Deuce! Thiem hammers the ball into the corner and Djokovic sends a backhand wide.

7:05pm: Djokovic has a break point.

7:02pm: Djokovic holds. Thiem serves at 4-2.

7:01pm: Thiem has another break point. But Djokovic saves that.

It's bright and sunny out there.

6:54pm: Novak Djokovic and Dominic Thiem are back on court after an hour. The two have spent three hours and 40 minutes on Philippe-Chatrier over two days.

As a consequence of the rain, the women's singles final between the 23-year-old Ashleigh Barty and the 19-year-old Marketa Vondrousova has been delayed, too. That match will be played after Djokovic and Thiem.

5:52pm: Rain halts play again.

Dominic Thiem leads Novak Djokovic 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 4-1, with the world No. 1 serving at 40-all.

5:51pm: Thiem gets the ball back in play with a looping lob, and Djokovic flubs a return. Break point for the Austrian!

5:46pm: Dominic Thiem consolidates his break with a hold. He's two games from the final for a second time.

5:43pm: First blood to Dominic Thiem! He's up 3-1 in the fifth set.

5:41pm: Thiem goes 30-0 up on Djokovic's serve. And now he has three break points!

5:38pm: A big serve down the T gets Thiem the service winner. Advantage Thiem. And he wins the next point and the game.

5:37pm: Duece.

5:36pm: Djokovic has a break point.

5:33pm: Djokovic holds. 1-all in the fifth set.

5:30pm: AGAIN! A repeat of the last point. And an early break point for Thiem.

5:29pm: Sensational rally. Dropshots, delicate touches, net exchanges, angles, the works...

5:25pm: Thiem holds to love to begin the fifth set.

5:17pm: Novak Djokvic wins the fourth set 7-5. We're into the decider after three hours and five minutes of play.

5:16pm: Djokovic has two set points.

5:12pm: A tight game from Thiem till the end but Djokovic gets the break on a double fault. He'll serve for the set at 6-5.

5:08pm: Djokovic holds. 5-5.

5:05pm: Thiem takes the first point as Djokovic serves to stay in the match.

5:03pm: Yet again Thiem hits a passing shot. 40-15 on his serve.

Ace and Thiem leads 5-4. He's a game away from the final. Djokovic to serve to stay in the match.

5:00pm: A strong return from Thiem forces the error from Djokovic. Break point.

And the break. Dominic Thiem levels at 4-all in the fourth. He's two games away from knocking out the world No. 1.

4:58pm: Djokovic loses his balance and plonks the ball into the net as he begins his service game.

4:56pm: Thiem holds. Djokovic leads 4-3.

4:53pm: Novak Djokovic back up the break with a hold to love. He leads the fourth set 4-2.

4:49pm: Djokovic breaks to love to edge in front in the fourth set at 3-2.

4:48pm: Thiem floats a backhand slice passing shot just long, and Djokovic has three break points. Thiem under pressure as the wind picks up.

4:47pm: Thiem double-faults and goes 0-30 down.

4:46pm: Thiem gets the break for 2-all. A really, really lucky point. He hammers the ball straight towards Djokovic, who's at the net. It clips the net and bounces high over Djokovic. An unintentional lob winner, if you may.

4:44pm: Thiem's dropshots are sublime. When Djokovic can't reach one, you know how good that was. Third break point.

4:43pm: Djokovic saves the first break point. And deuce.

4:42pm: Thiem has two break points to go level in the fourth set.

4:40pm: A backhand return passing shot gives Thiem 30-0 on Djokovic's serve.

4:38pm: Djokovic has the break!

4:37pm: Djokovic gets a break point at the end of a 22-shot rally. Thiem seemed to have the point won after five shots exchanged at the net, but gets a netcord and Djokovic hits an easy winner.

4:36pm: Thiem out of trouble at 30-all.

4:35pm: Uh-oh. Thiem goes 0-30 down on his serve.

A magnificent all-court rally sends Djokovic scrambling . Thiem 15-30.

4:33pm: Djokovic holds to love.

4:31pm: Thiem holds serve to start the fourth set.

4:28pm: Djokovic complains to the chair umpire about the service clock. He feels it's starting too soon. The world No. 1 says the crowd has to stop clapping before the service clock starts counting down. His frustration is clearly showing.

4:27pm: Dominic Thiem wins the third set. He leads Novak Djokovic 6-2, 3-6, 7-5.

4:26pm: A fourth set point for Thiem with another powerful backhand passing shot down the line.

4:25pm: Djokovic gives Thiem a third set point with a forehand long.

An ace brings up deuce No. 6.

4:24pm: A monster backhand return from Thiem and a monster forehand crosscourt passing shot brings up deuce No. 4. And he has set point No. 2.

Big serve from Djokovic forces an errant return. Deuce again.

4:22pm: Thiem's slice backhand floats long. Deuce No. 3.

4:21pm: Set point for Thiem! Djokovic sends a forehand wide while the Austrian ran the other way.

4:20pm: The service clock is in play. I mean, serious play. Brief exchanges between Djokovic and the chair umpire before and after that last point.

The world No. 1 gets game point and then sends the ball long for deuce No. 2.

4:19pm: Thiem finds another forehand passing shot. Deuce.

4:13pm: An easy hold for Dominic Thiem. Djokovic serves to stay in the third set for a second time.

4:12pm: Thiem has been using his one-handed backhand to great effect in this match. Maybe he needs to use the slice a little less and depend on his brute force to avoid giving Djokovic time to retrieve. 40-15 Thiem on serve.

4:11pm: Tiem looks to end the point early with a dropshot but miscues it into the net. And a forehand long from Djokovic makes it 15-all.

4:10pm: Djokovic holds for 5-all in the third.

Stat attack: Djokovic is 13 of 31 in net points won. Thiem is 7 of 8.

4:08pm: Djokovic had the point in the bag and chance to go 30-0 up. His forehand finds the net instead. 15-all.

A quick recap of yesterday's action: Nadal hands Federer worst Slam loss in 11 years to reach 12th French Open final

4:05pm: A gutsy service hold from Dominic Thiem. He staves off two break points and a resurgent Djokovic. He leads the third set 5-4.

4:04pm: Thiem keeps his composure. Djokovic loses his racquet chasing down that dropshot.

4:03pm: Thiem goes for a backhand winner but instead finds the net, and Djokovic finds another break point.

A monster serve for Thiem when it matters. Deuce.

4:02pm: A 21-shot rally and it's Thiem time for some good. He had four chances to win that point before a net cord gets it for him.

4:00pm: A brutal serve for Thiem and then bad luck. His shot clip the net and bounces out. Break point for the world No. 1.

3:59pm: Djokovic is caught flat-footed by a Thiem dropshot. It's 15-all on the Austrian's serve.

3:57pm: An errant return gives Djokovic the hold.

The match is on an even keel. They're one set each and four-all in the third set.

3:56pm: A fabulous exchange at the net follows a Djokovic dropshot. Thiem wins the 24-shot rally for 30-all.

3:54pm: Djokovic is looking very composed today. His emotions were all over the place yesterday.

He starts his service game by winning the point with a ripping forehand.

3:52pm: Djokovic breaks Thiem and the score is 3-4 with the Serb to serve. Looks like the rain suspension is helping the world no.1.

3:50pm: A beautiful drop shot from Thiem to make it 30-30, but Djokovic gets another break point immediately.

3:48pm: Djokovic returns the favour comfortably and its 4-2 now.

3:45pm: Thiem saves the break point, holds serve with a perfect winner and leads 4-1 now.

3:42pm: The match starts and Djokovic has a break point straightaway. A number of unforced errors from Thiem.

3:37pm: Both the players are warming up. Just a reminder --- Djokovic leads the overall head-to-head 6-2 but both of Thiem's wins have come on clay.

On Court Philippe-Chartier, top seed Novak Djokovic takes on fourth seed Dominic Thiem in the semifinal which was supended yesterday due to rain. Thiem leads 6-2 3-6 3-1 in the third set.

READ | French Open: Barty looks to end 46-year Aussie drought in Paris

The 5"5 Barty is the breakout star of the year. Just 23, she'd had quite a storied career. In 2013, she reached the doubles finals at the Australian Open, the French Open and the US Open at age 16-17. But at the end of 2015, Barty took a break from tennis because, in her own words, she wanted to have normal experiences.

Barty spent 2016 playing cricket in the Women's Big Bash League and the Women's National Cricket League in Australia. She returned to tennis the years after, winning her first WTA title and cracking the top 20 in the world as well as making a fourth doubles Grand Slam final.

In 2018, Barty won the US Open doubles title with CoCo Vandeweghe and also the WTA Elite Trophy, the biggest title of her singles career.

At this year's Australian Open, she made the quarterfinal of a Major for the first time.

The last Australian woman to win the French Open was Margaret Cout in 1973 and the last Australian man to win it was Rod Laver in 1968.

And 19-year-old Marketa Vondrousova the first teenager since Jelena Ostapenko in 2017 to reach this stage of a Grand Slam, beating Petra Martic in straight sets.

Preview and Order of play

We have a Saturday blockbuster lined up for us, if the weather in Paris behaves, that is.

READ | French Open: Djokovic, Thiem to resume semifinal clash on Saturday after play called off

The French Open is the only Grand Slam without a retractable roof. But that won't be for long. Court Philippe-Chatrier was largely demolished after the 2018 tournament and rebuilt in time for this year's edition, and it'll have a retractable roof in place for 2020.

Saturday's order of play

Court Philippe-Chartier

3:00pm: Novak Djokovic (1) vs Dominic Thiem (4)

6:30pm: Ashleigh Barty (8) vs Marketa Vondrousova

8:30pm*: Jeremy Chardy/Fabrice Martin vs Kevin Krawietz/Andreas Mies

*Estimated