Mikael Ymer showcased extraordinary defence to fend off a barrage from Gael Monfils and win the unlikeliest of points at the French Open.
The Swede, 22, was already flying on Court Suzanne-Lenglen after bageling the 2008 semi-finalist in the first set when a mad rally began early in the second.
Monfils manoeuvred his opponent from one side of the court to the other, with Ymer somehow getting back into the rally with three last-ditch gets.
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The Frenchman was not done, upping the ante again to force his opponent into three more full-stretch shots. But Ymer would not go away.
Frustrated, Monfils tried a different tactic and threw in a drop shot. It wasn’t the best, as Ymer scampered forwards to tee up an opportunity – one he grabbed by firing a smash winner to end a 33-shot rally that had lasted almost a minute.
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“Absolutely incredible, a couple of gets there from Ymer were simply world-class,” said former British professional Arvind Parmar on Eurosport commentary.
“Yet [against] so many other players they would have been winners and Monfils was just running out of idea in the end. There was just no way through.
“His father was a professional marathon runner so it’s in his blood, doing laps there.”
Ultimately, Ymer lost his way a little in the second set as Monfils fought back to level in the best-of-five encounter. He was seeking to reach the third round at Roland Garros for the first time in his career.
It was not the only incident from the afternoon session on the fifth day at the French Open.
World number one Ashleigh Barty was forced to retire from the tournament with an injury, further opening up the women’s draw at Roland Garros.
Naomi Osaka pulled out on Monday after being threatened with expulsion over a press boycott. Serena Williams, Novak Djokovic and Coco Gauff are among those to back the four-time Grand Slam champion.
The four Grand Slams – the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open – offered "support and assistance" to her in a joint-statement.
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Watch all the action from the 2021 French Open live on Eurosport, eurosport.co.uk and the Eurosport app with 13-time champion Rafael Nadal eyeing a remarkable 14th title at his favourite event and 2020 Roland Garros sensation Iga Swiatek aiming to replicate her stunning triumph.
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