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Thiem beats Monfils in London

Sky Sports logo Sky Sports 16-11-2016

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Dominic Thiem defeated Gael Monfils in three sets to revive his hopes of qualifying for the last four of the ATP World Tour Finals. 

Thiem, who lost to Novak Djokovic in his first match, prevailed 6-3 1-6 6-4 in a closely fought encounter at the O2 Arena in which Monfils appeared to struggle with a leg problem during the second and third sets.

Thiem will give himself a strong chance of progressing to Saturday's semi-finals if he can beat Milos Raonic in his final round-robin match, but Monfils has now lost both of his ties and needs to overcome Djokovic on Thursday, as well as hope other results go his way, to stay in the tournament.

Shot of the match

Monfils laid the platform for breaking Thiem early in the second set with this corker of a forehand on the turn.

Thiem's reaction

"It was a very close match. I had the much better start and then he was playing a good second set, and the third set was very tight. Luckily he helped me a little bit in the last game of the match. Maybe I was a little bit lucky I won today."

Expert analysis

Mark Petchey: "He [Thiem] won it with his head rather than his feet and his groundstrokes. He managed to hang in there and ride out the wave of great tennis from Gael. Let's not forget a couple of wonderful forehands from Monfils to give himself a chance. He weathered the storm really well out there."

Peter Fleming: "It was a shame because Monfils wasn't able to give his best. You could tell he was in a lot of pain out there and there were a number of times when he slid into a shot but chose not to and chose to keep running to take the stress off of that part of his body."

The match

Both players made solid starts, but Thiem gained the upper hand when he broke in the fifth and ninth games to clinch the opening set.

Monfils had started to move gingerly by this point, but he compensated by launching booming forehands and the tactic paid dividends when he broke twice to take a 4-0 lead.

Although Thiem gave himself hope by breaking back, Monfils was in rampant form and broke for a third time to take the second set 6-1.

Despite Monfils continuing to hobble around the court and being seen stretching his legs out at each change of end, the third set went with serve for the first nine games.

However, Monfils then lost his composure when serving to say in the match and three double faults handed Thiem victory.

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