Dominic Thiem has lavished praise on Emma Raducanu's US Open-winning run, labeling it "perhaps the greatest breakthrough" in tennis history.
Raducanu won her maiden Grand Slam at the US Open on Saturday. Her run in New York came as a huge surprise given the fact that she had never won a WTA title and was playing in just her second Grand Slam event.
The British teenager became the first qualifier - male or female - to win a Major. She broke a laundry list of magnificent records en route to the title, including becoming the first female player to win a Major in only her second attempt.
Raducanu defied the odds and went on to win the title without dropping a set, a feat many are claiming to be among the greatest sporting achievements of all time.
During a recent conversation with Omnisport, Dominic Thiem said Raducanu's run in New York was unlike anything ever seen before in tennis.
"For me this is one of the greatest achievements in women's sport. It was an unbelievable journey, you just have to look at the numbers," Dominic Thiem said. "She didn't lose one set the whole tournament. She came from qualifying and she didn't even play one tiebreak. We have probably never seen anything like this before."
Thiem was particularly impressed by Raducanu's technique and footwork, given that she is still very new to the tour. The Brit won three qualifying matches before winning seven in the main draw, marking one of the most stunning breakthrough runs ever seen.
Also the way she plays, her technique, the way she moves, somehow she brought it up to a new level for the whole game... it was great to see," Thiem added. "Perhaps it is the greatest breakthrough of all time."
Emma Raducanu will hope to learn from Dominic Thiem's example
After winning his maiden Grand Slam at the 2020 US Open, Dominic Thiem hit a wall as he struggled to find motivation. Thiem had always maintained that winning a Major was one of his childhood ambitions, which is why he found it difficult to set new goals after achieving the milestone.
The Austrian took quite a few months to regain his motivation, only to suffer a series of injuries that derailed his season. Having called time on his 2021 season due to a wrist injury, Thiem is expected to return to action early next year, and it is difficult to predict how the Austrian will fare upon his comeback.
While injuries are part and parcel of the sport, Emma Raducanu must not let her maiden Slam win hamper her mindset, which was the case with Thiem.
That said, Raducanu is much younger than Thiem, so even if she were to struggle for a few months, she will have plenty of time to regroup and hit top gear once again.