Dominic Thiem has a fantastic relationship with his friend Alexander Zverev, but when he is on court against him, he never loses his focus.
The Austrian is having a rather lousy start of the season for a top10 player to have a grim 6-4 win-loss record. Besides reaching the 4th round at the Australian Open, Dominic managed to win only one match in Brisbane and Sydney; in Sofia, where he was the top seed, he crashed in the opener.
For this reason, Thiem was particularly nervous before facing his dear friend Alexander Zverev in the first round in Rotterdam. Before this match, Dominic was leading Zverev 3-1 in head to head matches against the German, but he lost the last one in Beijing.
Things started badly for the world no.8 in Rotterdam where he was 0-4 down in no-time. After losing the first set, Thiem regrouped and won the second after conquering the decisive break in the 6th game (4-2). The decider was a sort of rollercoaster. Thiem broke Zverev in the third game (2-1) to be broken back immediately (2-2). Later the Austrian won the decisive break in the 9th game (5-4) to finally clinch the match 3-6 6-3 6-4.
He is one of the best players around. THIEM
After the match, Dominic commented
“He’s one of the best players in the world right now. He played an amazing match at the Australian Open against Rafa, just won his second title in Montpellier, so it was a horrible draw for me.
Even though I was 0-4 down I felt pretty good from the start of the match, I was hitting my returns well, used my slice smartly. Overall it was my best performance in a long time. For my confidence, this is exactly what I needed, a very good match against a really, really good player.”
Next vs. Simon
Dominic will play Gilles Simon in the second round. The head to head is 3-2 for Thiem that has won the last two matches.