Dominic Thiem's remarkable US Open triumph made him the talk of the tennis world. The 27-year-old became the first men's singles player to win his maiden Grand Slam since 2014, and also the first male player born in the 90s to win a Major.
Recently, Dominic Thiem's grandfather Josef Mullner opened up about how much the feat meant to him and the entire family. Mullner expressed great pride at his grandson's stirring comeback in the final, where he overturned a two-set deficit to beat Alexander Zverev.
"Proud as many grandpas," said Mullner when asked about the US Open.
Mullner is very optimistic about the future too, asserting that "World No. 1 (ranking) will come" eventually for the 27-year-old.
Have learnt the chaos from Dominic Thiem: Jodef Mullner
During the interview, Mullner also shed light on the nature of his relationship with Dominic Thiem and the hard-hitting baseliner's early professional years.
Dominic Thiem himself has spoken in the past about the important role that his family has played in his career, particularly his grandfather. Mullner has now revealed that he helped with his grandson's tennis travels at the beginning of his career.
"I was responsible for the trips to Eastern Europe, his mom was for the beautiful destinations," said Mullner. "Dominic played first tournaments abroad, I was just retiring. It was a perfect fit."
The Austrian's grandfather also laid great emphasis on education, even though he knew Dominic wanted to be a professional tennis player from a very young age. The World No. 3 eventually dropped out of school at the age of 16 - something Mullner hails as the right decision today.
"I wanted Dominic to read," reminisced Mullner. "Today I know that it was right, but I'm happy when he sees me and says: 'Grandpa, I've read the book.'"
Mullner also claimed that he learnt various things from his grandson, rather than it only being the other way around.
"I have learnt the chaos. He explained to me early on that a tennis player lives out of his pocket. This is how it looked in the hotel room," claimed the US Open champion's grandfather.
Dominic Thiem is currently trying to defend his title at the Erste Bank Open in Vienna, where he beat Vitaliy Sachko on Tuesday. The Austrian will next play the Paris Masters, before returning to London for the Nitto ATP Finals - where he was the runner-up in 2019.Published 28 Oct 2020, 01:10 IST