US Open champion Dominic Thiem said he was “over the limit” physically in his five-hour 7-6 (7-1) 5-7 6-7 (6-8) 7-6 (7-5) 6-2 loss to Diego Schwartzman in the French Open quarter-finals.
Austrian Thiem beat Hugo Gaston in the last round in another gruelling five-set encounter, and simply ran out of steam against the Argentine.
“In the end I gave everything I had out there,” Thiem said.
“It was an amazing match – I think the first in my career over five hours.”
The start of the two-time finalist’s French Open run was only two weeks after he won his maiden Grand Slam title at Flushing Meadows.
“It was a pretty short time with the long trip home, jet lag and everything,” Thiem said. “Come here, play in pretty brutal conditions. I cannot say it was a bad tournament – I’m pretty happy about it.”
The match, played in blustery weather, featured numerous long rallies, with both players breaking each other several times because of their superb return games.
The first four sets were tight before Thiem’s level dropped in the decider, while 12th seed Schwartzman reached his first major semi-final and will now face Rafael Nadal.
The Spanish defending champion, seeking a 13th title, beat Jannik Sinner in straight sets on Philippe Chatrier.
Schwartzman said: “So this win is very important for me. In the second and third sets, I was going a little crazy and I was screaming at myself because I had so many chances. “But come on, I deserved to win,” excited Schwartzman said