Argentine men in the semifinals of Roland Garros


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Argentine men in the semifinals of Roland Garros

Diego Schwartzman (14th) reached the semifinals of Roland Garros for the first time in his career after beating Dominic Thiem (3rd) by 7-6 (1), 5-7, 6-7 (6), 7-6 (5) and 6-2. In this way he became the 10th Argentine man to reach this stage of the contest.

The first to achieve this was Guillermo Vilas in 1975, facing the American Eddie Dibbs whom he beat 6-1, 6-4, 1-6 and 6-1. In the final he would then lose to Bjorn Borg in straight sets. Two years later, he would repeat, reaching the semifinals but this time with a 6-2, 6-0, 6-3 win over Raúl Ramírez. In the final he faced Brian Gottfried and got rid of him 6-0, 6-3 and 6-0. In 1978 he could not repeat what he had done the previous year and lost in the final to Borg.

In 1981 it was José Luis Clerc who reached the semi-finals at Roland Garros. In that match he was measured against Czech Ivan Lendl but in a match that lasted five sets, the Argentine lost 3-6, 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 and 6-2. The following year both Clerc and Vilas reached the pre-final round but only Vilas emerged victorious. In the decisive match, he fell to the Swede Wilander.

After what happened in 1982, it took 18 years to see an Argentine tennis player again in the semifinals of the French Open. It was Franco Squillari who faced the Swede Magnus Norman, but could not beat him as he fell in straight sets 1-6, 4-6 and 3-6. Three years later it was Guillermo Coria who broke into the semis against the Dutch Martin Verkerk, who took the victory 7-6 (4), 6-4 and 7-6 (0).

In the 2004 edition of the French Open, there were three Argentines who occupied places in the semis: David Nalbandian, Guillermo Coria and Gastón Gaudio. The “King David” faced “Gato”, who beat him in three sets by 6-3, 7-6 (5) and 6-0 and then play the final against the “Magician”, who got rid of the British Tim Henman 3-6, 6-4, 6-0 and 7-5. In the final between the two Argentines, it was Gaudio who won the trophy, winning 0-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 and 8-6.

A year after that historic Roland Garros, Mariano Puerta reached the semifinals in which he faced Nikolay Davydenko. The Russian, despite fighting, could not beat the Argentine who took the game 6-3, 5-7, 2-6, 6-4 and 6-4. The final would see him face to face with a young Rafael Nadal who defeated him to win his first Roland Garros.

The last two men to reach this stage were David Nalbandian in 2006 (he lost to Roger Federer) and Juan Martín Del Potro in 2009 and 2018 (he lost to Federer and Nadal).


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