Paris, France, 2 June 2024 | Leigh Rogers

Alex de Minaur has become the first Australian in 17 years to progress to the men’s singles fourth round at Roland Garros.

The 25-year-old continued his career-best run in Paris with a stirring 4-6 6-4 6-3 6-3 victory against big-hitting German Jan-Lennard Struff in third-round action today.

De Minaur described the match as a “huge mental battle”.

“I would probably say it was one of my best performances mentally I’ve had probably in my career to turn that match around with the conditions, with everything really against me,” De Minaur said.

“I’m extremely stoked to have made the second week of Roland Garros.”

The world No.11 looked in trouble early, trailing 3-6 1-3, but with his never-say-die attitude, managed to find away to turn the match into his favour.

De Minaur also recovered from an 0-2 deficit in the third set, returning after a lengthy rain delay to win six of the next seven games.

“I just told myself that, you know, the only chance or way I was going to win this match was just to fight ’til the end, fight every single point, keep battling, try to stay in no matter what, and that’s what got me the win,” De Minaur admitted.

“I battled through, and I managed to turn it around at times where it looked quite dark out there, and, yeah, I’m very happy with that.”

World No.41 Struff struck 43 winners to 28 throughout the two-hour and 54-minute encounter, but De Minaur’s newfound self-belief on his least favourite surface was evident under pressure.

The Australian made the most of his opportunities, converting seven of the 10 break points he earned throughout the high-quality contest. Struff, on the other hand, only secured four of the 15 break points he held.

“I was suffering ’til the very last point. That’s the honest feeling I had out there,” De Minaur said.

“Almost every service game I was fighting off break points. There was never a stage where I felt like, ‘Okay, I’m in command, I’m in control, I’m just going to run away with this’.”

Struff is an accomplished clay-court player, entering the match with 11 wins from his 14 matches on the surface this season. At world No.11, De Minaur becomes the lowest-ranked opponent that the 34-year-old has lost to on clay in 2024.

“It’s huge,” De Minaur said of this result. “I mean, it’s huge for the confidence, huge for just also rewarding yourself for the hard work and staying in the match, right? A lot of the times you do your best, you fight your hardest. But, you know, this is tennis. Sometimes you don’t get rewarded.

“But a day like today where, you know, I’m backed against the wall, a lot of things going against me, and managing to kind of find the gold at the end of the tunnel is huge. It kind of gives me that confidence that I can do it again and again now.”

This impressive effort sees De Minaur become just the ninth Australian man to advance to the fourth round at Roland Garros in the past 40 years, and the first to reach this stage since Lleyton Hewitt in 2007.

Roland Garros men’s singles
Australians to reach the fourth round in past 40 years
Player Year
Pat Cash 1988
Pat Rafter 1994, 1997
Scott Draper 1995, 1996
Mark Philippoussis 1997, 2000
Mark Woodforde 1997
Jason Stoltenberg 1998
Lleyton Hewitt 2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2007
Wayne Arthurs 2001
Alex de Minaur 2024

De Minaur’s reward is a fourth-round showdown with world No.5 Daniil Medvedev.

The 28-year-old Medvedev, a six-time Grand Slam finalist, has won six of their eight previous encounters. All of these have been on hard courts.

“It should be hopefully fun to play him on the clay,” De Minaur said. “I have yet to do that, so hopefully we can play a good match and I can go out there and show what I can do.”

Later in the day, Thanasi Kokkinakis’ winning run came to an end in the third round. However, the 28-year-old Australian went down fighting, producing a lion-hearted effort to extend world No.12 Taylor Fritz to five sets.

Kokkinakis hit 57 winners to Fritz’s 56, but it wasn’t enough to stop the American from saluting 6-3 6-2 6-7(4) 5-7 6-3 in a three-hour and 48-minute battle.

Inclement weather again in Paris meant all scheduled doubles matches featuring Australian players were postponed for the day.

Aussies in action – Roland Garros

Men’s singles, third round
[11] Alex de Minaur (AUS) d Jan-Lennard Struff (GER) 4-6 6-4 6-3 6-3
[12] Taylor Fritz (USA) d Thanasi Kokkinakis (AUS) 6-3 6-2 6-7(4) 5-7 6-3

Men’s singles, fourth round
[11] Alex de Minaur (AUS) v [5] Daniil Medvedev

> VIEW: Roland Garros 2024 men’s singles draw

Men’s doubles, first round
[2] Matt Ebden (AUS)/Rohan Bopanna (IND) v [Alt] Orlando Luz (BRA)/Marcelo Zormann (BRA)
John-Patrick Smith (AUS)/Denys Molchanov (UKR) v Petros Tsitsipas (GRE)/Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE)

Men’s doubles, second round
Max Purcell (AUS)/Jordan Thompson (AUS) v [7] Wesley Koolhof (NED)/Nikola Mektic (CRO) 4-6 6-4 1-1 to finish
John Peers (AUS)/Roman Safiullin v [10] Sander Gille (BEL)/Joran Vliegen (BEL)
Rinky Hijikata (AUS)/Guido Andreozzi (ARG) v TBC

> VIEW: Roland Garros 2024 men’s doubles draw

Women’s doubles, second round
[2] Ellen Perez (AUS)/Nicole Melichar-Martinez (USA) v Wang Xiyu (CHN)/Yuan Yue (CHN)

> VIEW: Roland Garros 2024 women’s doubles draw

Mixed doubles, first round
Nicole Melichar-Martinez (USA)/John Peers (AUS) v [5] Vera Zvonareva/Sander Gille (BEL)

Mixed doubles, second round
[1] Ellen Perez (AUS)/Matt Ebden (AUS) v TBC

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