The Latest: Putintseva loses set and temper at French Open

Madison Keys of the U.S.serves to Romania's Mihaela Buzarnescu during their fourth round match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium, Sunday, June 3, 2018 in Paris. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

PARIS (AP) The Latest on the French Open (all times local):

9:40 p.m.

Before making it to the French Open semifinals, Mario Cecchinato had lost in the first round at each of the four Grand Slam tournaments he had entered.

In Paris last year, he did not even play in the main draw after losing in the final round of qualifying.

No wonder he was submerged by emotions after a final backhand winner on his fourth match point against former champion Novak Djokovic.

”On the return, when I saw (the ball) on the line, it was the best moment of my life,” he said.

7:59 p.m.

Novak Djokovic has hinted he could skip the grass-court season after his quarterfinal exit at the French Open.

Djokovic looked sad and dejected during his post-match news conference, giving very brief answers to reporters.

”I don’t know if I’m going to play on grass,” he answered a journalist who asked when he would start his season on the super-fast surface.

Djokovic did not elaborate when another reporter asked him for more details.

7:29 p.m.

Novak Djokovic has lost in the French Open quarterfinals.

The 2016 champion was beaten 6-3, 7-6 (4), 1-6, 7-6 (11) by Italian player Marco Cecchinato after a battle that lasted nearly 3 hours on Court Suzanne Lenglen and produced several scintillating rallies.

Djokovic saved three match points in the fourth-set tiebreaker before his 72nd-ranked rival converted his fourth with a backhand return winner.

Cecchinato became the lowest-ranked semifinalist at Roland Garros since No. 100 Andrei Medvedev advanced to the last four back in 1999.

6:10 p.m.

Novak Djokovic has won the third set against Marco Cecchinato as he tries to stage a comeback against the 72nd-ranked Italian.

The former top-ranked player has raised his level and sealed the set 6-1 after dropping the first two 6-3, 7-6 (4).

Djokovic had his neck massaged during the opening set and called the trainer again after reducing his deficit, this time to receive treatment on his right leg.

Cecchinato received a penalty point immediately after Djokovic was treated, for ”unsportsmanlike conduct.” The Italian player was seen in a conversation with a tournament official but it was not clear why he was penalized.

5:35 p.m.

U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens is through to the French Open semifinals for the first time.

The 10th-seeded American had little trouble beating No. 14 Daria Kasatkina 6-3, 6-1 on Court Philippe Chatrier.

She clinched the victory on her first match point with a forehand winner from the baseline.

Stephens next faces countrywoman Madison Keys in a rematch from the U.S. Open final.

Earlier, the 13th-seeded Keys beat Yulia Putintseva 7-6 (5), 6-4.

4:35 p.m.

Novak Djokovic had his neck massaged by a trainer after dropping the first set of his French Open quarterfinal against Marco Cecchinato 6-3.

The former top-ranked player had already received treatment at the 5-2 changeover.

4 p.m.

Dominic Thiem has secured a third consecutive French Open semifinal by claiming a straight-sets win against Alexander Zverev.

The second-seeded German was hampered by a thigh injury and lost their quarterfinal 6-4, 6-2, 6-1 in less than two hours.

Zverev entered having played in three consecutive five-setters – he trailed 2-1 in sets in each before coming back – and the wear-and-tear showed.

Just 10 minutes in, he clutched at his left hamstring. He grabbed it again midway through the second set, after giving chase to one of several drop shots that Thiem used to force Zverev to run a lot.

After falling behind 4-1 in that set an hour into the match, Zverev called for a trainer, who applied a thick bandage to the German’s upper left leg during a changeover.

Soon enough, Zverev was down two sets to none, and this proved to be too much of a deficit for him to overcome. He trailed 4-0 in the third set before getting a game.

The seventh-seeded Thiem is the only player to have defeated Rafael Nadal on clay this season.

3:35 p.m.

Madison Keys has advanced to her first French Open semifinal by defeating Yulia Putintseva 7-6 (5), 6-4.

Keys, the runner-up at the U.S. Open last year, has improved a lot on clay and is 11-3 on the surface this season.

This is the first time the 13th-seeded American player, a semifinalist at the Australian Open three years ago, advances to a Grand Slam semifinal not on a hard court.

She has yet to lose a set at Roland Garros this year.

3:25 p.m.

Trailing 6-4, 4-1 against Dominic Thiem on Court Philippe Chatrier, second-seeded Alexander Zverev called a trainer to receive treatment on his left thigh at the changeover.

He returned to the court with his leg bandaged and lost the next game.

He lost the set 6-2 and left the court.

3:10 p.m.

Yulia Putintseva has lost the first set of her French Open quarterfinal, and her temper, too.

The 98th-ranked Kazakh player saved a set point but lost the first-set tiebreaker 7-6 (5) against Madison Keys, then started ranting at her box and struck the ground with her racket in frustration.

Putintseva is trying to become the first player from Kazakhstan to advance to a Grand Slam semifinal.

2:15 p.m.

The French Open quarterfinals have started on an overcast day with rain in the forecast.

No. 13 Madison Keys is playing Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan at Court Suzanne Lenglen in the first women’s quarterfinal.

Second-seeded Alexander Zverev is facing No. 7 Dominic Thiem at Court Philippe Chatrier in a matchup between rising stars of men’s tennis.

1:45 p.m.

The French Open quarterfinals are scheduled to get started with second-seeded Alexander Zverev facing No. 7 Dominic Thiem in a matchup between rising stars of men’s tennis seeking a first Grand Slam title.

There already has been rain at Roland Garros on Tuesday, and there is more in the forecast, so it could be a stop-and-start afternoon.

A second match pits 12-time major champion Novak Djokovic against Marco Cecchinato of Italy, who was cleared of a match-fixing charge on a technicality in 2016. Cecchinato had never won a match at a major tournament until last week and, at No. 72, is the lowest-ranked French Open men’s quarterfinalist in a decade.

Two Americans are in the women’s quarterfinals: No. 10 Sloane Stephens and No. 13 Madison Keys, who played each other in the U.S. Open final last year. Stephens meets No. 14 Daria Kasatkina of Russia, while Keys plays 98th-ranked Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan. One of the four will become a first-time French Open finalist.

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