Thiem thrilled with Djokovic win, eager to face 'favourite' Nadal

Dominic Thiem will attempt to become just Austria's second Grand Slam men's champion when he takes on Rafael Nadal in the French Open final on Sunday.

Dominic Thiem embraces Novak Djokovic following his victory in their men's singles French Open semifinal.   -  Getty Images

Novak Djokovic's dream of becoming just the second man in history to hold all Grand Slam titles at the same time twice was crushed by Dominic Thiem at Roland Garros on Saturday.

Thiem downed the world number one 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 7-5 to set up a repeat of last year's final against 11-time winner and defending champion Rafael Nadal.

Djokovic, who was second best to Thiem when it came to mastering the gloom, wind and damp of Paris, was bidding to join Rod Laver in the Grand Slam history books.

However, it's 25-year-old Austrian fourth seed Thiem who goes on to face Nadal where he will be buoyed by having defeated the 17-time major winner four times on clay in his career.

He will also attempt to become just Austria's second Grand Slam men's champion after Thomas Muster won in Paris in 1995.

“It was an amazing match. It was my first five-set match at Roland Garros so it was a good one to have,” said Thiem after the four hour 13-minute match which was played over two days.

“To be in the semifinals with the three best players of all time (Nadal beat Roger Federer in the other semi on Friday) is really amazing.”

On the challenge of facing Nadal, who has had a day more to recover, he added: “It seems that anyone who gets to the final here plays Rafa. He will be the favourite but I hope to just leave it all out on the court again and we will see.”

“I congratulate Dominic, he played great, especially in the important moments,” said Djokovic, after the defeat. “Obviously, when you're playing in hurricane-like conditions it's hard to play your best.”

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