French Open 2021 tennis - Pablo Andujar dumps out Dominic Thiem in enormous shock at Roland Garros
Fourth seed and former finalist at Roland Garros, Dominic Thiem, suffered a shock defeat in the first round in Paris as he slumped to a five-set loss to journeyman Pablo Andujar. It was a quite unbelievable performance from the 35-year-old Spaniard, who won 4-6 5-7 6-3 6-4 6-4, and he could not comprehend what he had achieved in beating the Austrian after the match.
'Can you believe it?' - Thiem with behind-the-back 'match turner'
'Really nice gift, very special' - Andujar on stunning win over Thiem
Thiem, who reached the final in Paris in 2018 and 2019, had never lost in the opening round at Roland Garros, but he was horribly off colour after taking the opening two sets and let the Spaniard seize control.
The 35-year-old, ranked 68th in the world, held serve under huge pressure at the tail end of a tense final set to claim victory after nearly four and a half hours.
'He's done it!' - Andujar springs huge shock to beat Thiem on day one
Andujar claimed a surprise win against 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer in Geneva earlier this month but was not expected to give Thiem much trouble in Paris.
"I was not struggling at all with my motivation but the game was just not there today," Thiem said after his stunning defeat.
"Like all the shots are missing power. They are not accurate enough. I'm moving not well enough, so everything in my game there are some percents missing."
'My game was just not there' - Thiem on his shock exit
Andujar, on the other hand, was delighted: "I believed in myself because I played well [against Federer] two weeks ago. Usually being drawn against Thiem is a bad draw," the Spaniard said.
"Winning today against a player like him is like a gift, even if he has not been at his best recently, because I'm 35 and I don't know how long I'm going to be playing for.
"Beating Roger was an even bigger gift. I feel like Father Christmas came to my home."
That could not have been more wrong as the 27-year-old Austrian continued his miserable form this season after winning his first Grand Slam title at Flushing Meadows last year.
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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 in Paris.