Argentinian tennis star Diego Schwartzman has weighed in on the debate as to who will receive the 2019 Stefan Edberg Sportsmanship Award. The world no. 14 is backing Dominic Thiem instead of perennial favorite Roger Federer.
Schwartzman said that he predicts that the Austrian tennis player will have a huge advantage in the race for the award. He believes that out of all the nominees in the category, Thiem displayed integrity and professionalism the most during the tennis season.
The Argentinian player praised the world no. 4 for being consistent in his excellence while maintaining a respectful attitude to his opponents in the court. He particularly emphasized Thiem’s ability to improve on his already-high year-end ranking in 2018.
While he is honored to be nominated alongside Federer and Thiem in the category, Schwartzman thinks that he might not have a chance to take home the ATP award. It is the Argentinian’s first time in the category. World no. 1 Rafael Nadal is also a nominee for the trophy.
If there is one person who can speak about sportsmanship in elite tennis, it is Schwartzman. In September, the 2018 Rio Open champ got the U.S. Open Sportsmanship Award, despite losing to eventual winner Nadal in the quarterfinal round.
Dominic Thiem’s 2019 performance
Thiem had one of his best performances in the past tennis season. He reached his career high in the rankings again this year due to major runner-up finishes in the French Open and the ATP Finals. He also prevailed in an ATP Masters 1000 tournament for the first time, winning in Indian Wells.
He also notably had one of the year’s most remarkable on-court rivalries with Federer. He faced the Swiss tennis icon three times in 2019 without any loss. These matches happened in the Indian Wells Masters, Madrid Open and the ATP Finals.
Federer’s previous Sportsmanship Award wins
Meanwhile, Federer maintains his status as a fan favorite for the ATP Awards’ Stefan Edberg Sportsmanship Award category. It is just a proof as to how popular he still is because the award is voted by his peers.
It can be recalled that the Swiss Maestro has previously won the trophy 13 times. In fact, Federer would have had a 15-year streak since 2004 if he was not interrupted by Rafael Nadal in 2010 and 2018.
Apart from the Sportsmanship Award, Federer is a consistent winner of the ATPWorldTour.com Fans’ Favourite Award. He has not lost the trophy since 2003. That gives Federer a total of 37 ATP World Tour Awards.
Dominic Thiem’s ranking and performance in 2019
Ranked no.4 (career-high), Thiem played his last match on the 17th of November when he was overcome by Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-76 6-2 7-64 in the final in London.
This year Dominic has a 47-17 win-loss record. Dominic conquered 5 titles in 2019 in Indian Wells, in Barcelona, in Kitzbuhel, in Beijing and in Vienna. Dominic was the finalist at the French Open and in London.
Roger Federer’s ranking and performance in 2019
Ranked no.3, the Swiss played his last match on the 16th of November when he had to bow to Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3 6-4 in the semifinal in London.
This year Roger has a 51-10 win-loss record. The Swiss conquered 4 titles in 2019 in Dubai, in Miami, in Halle and in Basel. Federer was the finalist in Indian Wells and in Wimbledon.
Dominic Thiem and Roger Federer played each other 7 times. The head to head is 5-2 for Thiem.
The last time that they locked horns, Dominic Thiem won 7-5 7-5 in the Round Robin in Nitto Atp Finals in 10th November 2019.
Dominic Thiem and Roger Federer
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