American Jared Donaldson had an incredible performance in today’s second-round French Open match against the fourth-seeded Grigor Dimitrov, pushing the Bulgarian to the brink in the fifth set, before fatigue was the ultimate decider. Donaldson resorted to trickery to get around his cramping, but it only went so far.
At 6-6 in the fifth set, with a game point on the line, Donaldson channeled 1989 French Open Michael Chang and snuck an underhand serve over the net. Dimitrov was positioned well behind the baseline and though he sprinted to get his racket on the ball, he floated it long.
Donaldson’s cramping got worse, to the point where he could barely bend his knees and was mostly spinning in his overhead serves. Serving at 15-30 with an 8-8 tie in the fifth set, Donaldson gave the underhand another try. This time it failed; Donaldson went on to lose the game.
Dimitrov easily served out the match to win in four hours and 20 minutes. He then kissed his legs, thankful for their fitness.