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Dominic Thiem has spoken out the sheer difficulty of facing tennis greats Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, ahead of the US Open.
“Well, I must be clear, in my first final at Roland Garros, against Rafael Nadal, I had no chance of beating him, we all know what he can do in that tournament,” asserted Thiem, before going on to say playing Nadal in that final “is probably the biggest challenge I’ve ever had in my sports career”.
Nadal is the reigning US Open champion but will likely be skipping the tournament. That gives Thiem even more confidence that he can win his maiden Grand Slam title in New York next month.
Thiem has reached the final of the French Open twice and the semi-final the same amount of times, sporting a win rate of 80% in the tournament, whereas the only other Grand Slam he has gone beyond the quarter-final in is the Australian Open earlier this year, in which he lost to Djokovic.
“Yes, in my third final, this year at the Australian Open, the chances were very close, it was an epic match,” said Thiem, while reflecting on his encounter with the Serb. He elaborated by saying: “When playing against the best players, like Novak Djokovic, you can’t make mistakes, even the little ones can decide whether to win or lose.”