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Djokovic edges past Cerundolo in another French Open five-setter

Novak Djokovic tennis betting

Novak Djokovic has produced a second miraculous escape at the French Open, this time against world No.23 Francisco Cerundolo in the round of 16 on Monday.

Just 37 hours after he bested Lorenzo Musetti in a four-hour, 29-minute marathon, the world No.1 found himself embroiled in another arm-wrestle. As he did against Musetti, Djokovic fell behind by 2-1 on sets and looked to be exiting the tournament early.

Once again, the 37-year-old showed incredible resolve to overcome a knee injury and fight his way through to a 6-1, 5-7, 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 victory in four hours and 39 minutes.

Djokovic digs himself out of a hole

Cerundolo played the match of his life but still came up short.

After a slow start which handed Djokovic the opening set 6-1, the Argentine sprang into life. Across sets two, three and four, Cerundolo blasted an incredible 50 winners, hitting the court from all angles as his forehand fired.

He took the second set in a tight 7-5 battle before breaking Djokovic early to claim the third set 6-3. In the fourth, the 25-year-old led by a break at 4-2 and was just a few plays away from closing out the match.

Yet again, the defending champion dug deep, channelled the crowd’s energy, and powered back into the match. Another 7-5 set saw Djokovic level the match before two breaks in the fifth handed him a fourth win at Roland-Garros in 2024.

Top seed credits French crowd once again

“I was 3-4 points away from losing this match today,” a relieved Djokovic confessed in French after the match.

“During the previous match with Musetti, it was 2-2 in the fourth set, and my energy level changed completely thanks to you,” he said to the Parisian crowd.

“The same again tonight, my energy level changed, you helped me.

“The only explanation I have is thanks to you.”

The win means Djokovic moves ahead of Roger Federer for the most Grand Slam match wins in history, with 370 across his career.

He will now face No.7 seed Casper Ruud in the quarter-finals, with the tough task of recovering from over nine hours on court in the last three days.

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