Dominic Thiem is an Austrian tennis player who is famous for his explosive game style and mammoth groundstrokes. Thiem is already a major force on clay despite being pretty young, and is expected to dominate the French Open once Rafael Nadal retires.
Best finish at each of the four Grand Slams:
Australian Open: 4th Round (2017, 2018)
French Open: Runner-up (2018)
Wimbledon: 4th Round (2017)
US Open: Quarterfinalist (2018)
Highest Ranking: No. 4
Style of play
Thiem is an aggressive baseliner who takes huge cuts at the ball almost every single shot. He stands well behind the baseline and looks to throw his entire body weight into his groundstrokes, making him one of the hardest hitters on the tour today.
Thiem's game is particularly suited to clay and slow surfaces, as he takes a lot of time to set up for his shots. He generates a tremendous amount of topspin and power on his forehand, which can penetrate very rapidly through the court.
His one-handed backhand is relatively flatter, and can travel through the court almost as quickly as his forehand. He doesn't use the slice a lot, unless he is pushed into a defensive position.
Thiem spends most of his time well behind the baseline, and rarely comes to the net.
Strengths and weaknesses
Thiem's power and foot speed are his two biggest assets, as he can outhit and outrun most players in the world. His forehand and backhand both have an incredible amount of forward momentum, and can push the opponent way off the court.
Thiem has a good first serve, but can be guilty of going for too much on the second serve. He's not a serve-reliant player though, as he attacks the ball with the same kind of intensity irrespective of whether he has a short ball to deal with or not.
Thiem's defense is an underrated aspect of his game. He is exceptionally quick around the court, and can cover a lot of ground - especially when he is pushed way behind the baseline.
His backhand is a bit of a liability right now, as it can occasionally produce untimely errors out of nowhere. His general tendency to try and hit the cover off the ball every shot works to his disadvantage sometimes; he rarely introduces variations into rallies, which makes him a tad predictable.
Thiem has often been criticized for his lack of an alternative game plan when his shots aren't firing.
Thiem was born in Wiener Neustadt, and started playing tennis at the age of six. His father Wolfgang and mother Karin are both professional tennis coaches, but Thiem's primary coach has been Gunter Bresnik; the two started working together back in 2002.
Thiem underwent compulsory training in the Austrian military between 2014 and 2015, which perhaps explains the impressive work ethic he has inculcated into his life. He is a fan of football in addition to tennis; he supports Chelsea in the Premier League, and has even founded his own football club called 1. TFC Matzendorf.
Thiem entered into a relationship with fellow tennis pro Kristina Mladenovic in 2017, and the two often post about each other on social media.
Thiem has established quite a strong claycourt legacy for himself, having registered multiple wins over Rafael Nadal on the surface already. While he is showing signs of improvement on other surfaces too, his claycourt exploits are what have kept the entire tennis world enthralled, and will likely continue to do so for many years to come.
Social media presence:
Dominic Thiem Instagram: @domithiem
Dominic Thiem Twitter: @ThiemDomi