Grigor Dimitrov

AP

Roger Federer stunned by Grigor Dimitrov at U.S. Open

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NEW YORK — Roger Federer shanked. He took an off-court medical timeout for treatment on his upper back and neck. He straight up stopped playing on one point. Federer was anything but himself, falling in five sets in the U.S. Open quarterfinals on Tuesday night.

Grigor Dimitrov, a former world No. 3 whose ranking has fallen to a seven-year-low 78, pulled off the stunner 3-6, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2 to make his third Grand Slam semifinal and his first since January 2017.

“[Federer] kind of started slowing down a little bit,” said Dimitrov, the lowest-ranked U.S. Open men’s semifinalist Jimmy Connors was No. 174 for his memorable 1991 run at age 39. “For sure at the end he was not 100 percent.”

Dimitrov, whose game was so similar to the Great Swiss that he was nicknamed “Baby Fed” years ago, was 1-7 in his last eight matches going into the U.S. Open and 0-7 against Federer in his career.

Federer’s U.S. Open ended five days earlier than expected. With Novak Djokovic out, his path was open to the final, potentially against Rafael Nadal for the first time at Flushing Meadows.

“Just disappointed it’s over because I feel like I was actually playing pretty well,” said Federer, who finished his two previous matches in a crisp 79 and 80 minutes, respectively. “Just a missed opportunity to some extent.”

Instead, Dimitrov gets No. 5 seed Daniil Medvedev in Friday’s semifinals. Nadal is the only man left in the draw who has made a Grand Slam final. He plays Argentine Diego Schwartzman in the quarterfinals on Wednesday night.

Federer was all over the place Tuesday night, reminding everyone of his age (38). He dominated at times, reeling off highlight shots. He sprayed balls into the seats at others with 60 unforced errors.

He took a rare medical timeout, leaving the court for several minutes before the final set. Then he dropped the next four games, a hole he could not climb out of.

“This is Grigor’s moment and not my body’s moment,” Federer said. “I fought with what I had.”

It all means that Federer failed to win a Grand Slam in a calendar year for the first time since 2016. His lead in the career Slam titles count is more precarious than ever.

He has 20. Nadal is at 18 and now heavily favored to get to 19 (and to at least 20 before next summer). How many more chances will Federer get to win Slams?

“I don’t have the crystal ball,” he said.

U.S. OPEN DRAWS: Men | Women

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Serena Williams holds opponent to 0 winners, into U.S. Open semifinals

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NEW YORK — Has Serena Williams ever been this dominant? She held 18th seed Wang Qiang to zero winners in a 44-minute 6-1, 6-0 victory in the U.S. Open quarterfinals on Tuesday night.

Make it 100 U.S. Open match wins for Williams, who by the way had 24 winners Tuesday. She said that when she debuted here in 1998, at age 16 (and won the title the next year), she never would have imagined reaching the century mark.

“It didn’t cross my mind that I would still be out here,” she said.

Wang, who will be ranked in the top 15 after the U.S. Open, was asked afterward what surprised her the most in her first match against Williams (and her first time playing at Arthur Ashe Stadium).

“Power,” she said. “I cannot handle it. Just too much for me.”

The most important numbers: 24 (Williams is two wins from a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles title) and one (Williams is looking for her first tournament title since becoming a mom).

She gets the highest seed left in the draw, No. 5 Elina Svitolina, in Thursday’s semifinals. The eighth-seeded American showed no affects from rolling her right ankle in the fourth round on Sunday.

Williams, who has made the semifinals of 10 straight U.S. Open appearances, is now one U.S. Open match win shy of Chris Evert‘s record 101. She is 100-12 all-time at Flushing Meadows.

She is also the only woman among the quarterfinalists who has Grand Slam final experience. Perhaps that will help her after losing all three of her Slam finals since returning from life-threatening childbirth last year.

“I”m definitely more ready than last year, although I thought I was playing really well last year,” Williams said. “After a small hiccup this year, I’m starting to play a little bit better.”

Svitolina, the highest-ranked woman yet to reach a Slam final, dispatched British 16th seed Jo Konta 6-4, 6-4 earlier Tuesday. Svitolina beat Williams in their last meeting at the Rio Olympics.

In men’s action Tuesday, fifth seed Daniil Medvedev became the first Russian man to make a Grand Slam semifinal since Mikhail Youzhny at the 2010 U.S. Open. Medvedev took out 2016 U.S. Open champion Stan Wawrinka 7-6 (6), 6-3, 3-6, 6-1. Medvedev gets Roger Federer or Grigor Dimitrov in the semifinals.

U.S. OPEN DRAWS: Men | Women

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French Open: No. 4 seeds upset in third round

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PARIS (AP) — The seeds began meeting at the French Open on Friday, producing the highest-ranked exits in the men’s and women’s draws.

Both No. 4 seeds, Grigor Dimitrov and Elina Svitolina, were upset to start third-round play at Roland Garros. The other top seeds in action all advanced, led by No. 2 Alexander Zverev (barely) and No. 7 Dominic Thiem and No. 2 Caroline Wozniacki and No. 13 Madison Keys.

NBC’s coverage of the French Open continues Saturday at 12 p.m. ET, also streaming on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app.

Saturday’s third-round schedule includes Serena Williams playing No. 11 Julia Goerges of Germany, Maria Sharapova against No. 6 Karolina Pliskova and Rafael Nadal versus Richard Gasquet. Williams and Sharapova would play each other in the fourth round.

On Friday, Dimitrov fell to 0-7 against top-50 opponents at the French Open and still has never made it to the fourth round at the clay-court Grand Slam tournament.

Dimitrov, a two-time major semifinalist, bowed out 7-6 (4), 6-2, 6-4 against Fernando Verdasco, who is ranked 35th and seeded 30th.

In his previous match, Dimitrov had come back after trailing two sets to one and defeated Jared Donaldson 10-8 in the fifth set. That 4-hour, 19-minute victory might have taken something out of Dimitrov.

Verdasco, meanwhile, got to the French Open round of 16 for the seventh time. He has lost at that stage on all six previous chances to reach the quarterfinals.

Svitolina surprisingly lost 6-3, 7-5 against Mihaela Buzarnescu, who never had won a Grand Slam match until this week.

Svitolina reached the quarterfinals at Roland Garros in 2015 and 2017 and was coming off a second consecutive title in Rome on red clay. She also came into the French Open with a chance to get to No. 1.

But the 31st-seeded Buzarnescu, a Romanian with a PhD in sports science, continued the surge that has seen her rise nearly 350 spots in the rankings over the past year. She has not dropped a set yet and will face U.S. Open runner-up Keys in the fourth round.

Zverev is into the fourth round of the French Open for the first time, saving match point to win 6-2, 3-6, 4-6, 7-6 (3), 7-5 against Damir Dzumhur, who collided with a ball boy in the fourth set.

Wozniacki breezed past French wild-card entry Pauline Parmentier 6-0, 6-3 and appears to be brimming with self-belief after her breakthrough Australian Open title in January.

Venus Williams and Serena Williams advanced to the third round in doubles, beating Sara Errani and Kirsten Flipkens 6-4, 6-2.

The Williams-Williams duo last competed at a major tournament together at Wimbledon in 2016. They won their 14th Grand Slam title in doubles at the All England Club.

Serena Williams, who gave birth to a daughter in September, is playing in Grand Slam singles for the first time in 16 months. She has reached the third round at Roland Garros, but her older sister lost in the first round.

Rain ended play prematurely on Friday, with U.S. Open winner Sloane Stephens among those unable to start their scheduled matches.

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FRENCH OPEN: TV/Stream Schedule | Scores | Men’s Draw (PDF) | Women’s Draw