PARIS: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga will have a sold-out crowd behind him but that is all he will be able to rely on when he tries to stop Novak Djokovic in his tracks on Tuesday as the Serb tries to take a step closer to holding all four grand slam titles.
The fifth-seeded Frenchman, playing in his first French Open quarter-final, has pledged to fight against the Djokovic but he is well aware that the world number one is not the same player with whom he shares a 5-5 win-loss record.
“If you look at the last matches, I did not win that much. I used to beat him because he was not as strong as today. He has improved a lot in the past two years,” said Tsonga.
Serbian Djokovic is looking to become only the third man to hold all four grand slam titles simultaneously, and the first since 1969.
Swiss third seed Roger Federer, who takes on Argentine ninth seed Juan Martin del Potro, is chasing another kind of achievement as he chases a record 17th major title.
If he wins, Federer will reach his 31st major semi-final and equal Jimmy Connors’s record for the most last-four appearances.
In the women’s draw, Samantha Stosur, the Australian sixth seed, will take on Slovakian 15th seed Dominika Cibulkova, who knocked out world number one Victoria Azarenka in the previous round.
Italian 21st seed Sara Errani will be looking to reach her first grand slam semi-final when she entertains German 10th seed Angelique Kerber in Court Suzanne Lenglen’s curtain-raiser.