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"I've never played such a strong tournament; it's absolute madness" - Dominic Thiem on Vienna event

Dominic Thiem at the 2020 US Open
Dominic Thiem at the 2020 US Open
Namit Kumar
ANALYST
Modified 23 Oct 2020, 19:28 IST
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Dominic Thiem has had a remarkable year on tour so far. The Austrian reached his first non-clay Grand Slam final at the Australian Open (even coming within inches of the title against Novak Djokovic in the final), and then won his first Grand Slam title at the US Open last month.

But the year hasn't ended for Thiem yet. The World No. 3 recently opened up about his plans for the rest of the 2020 season, as well as his participation in his home tournament at Vienna - where the draw is unusually strong this year.

Vienna is a very big goal every year: Dominic Thiem

 Novak Djokovic (L) and Dominic Thiem at the 2020 Australian Open
 Novak Djokovic (L) and Dominic Thiem at the 2020 Australian Open

The ATP 500 Erste Bank Open in Vienna has a packed draw this year due to the shortage of tournaments amid the pandemic, but defending champion Dominic Thiem was always confirmed to play in his home country. Speaking to Der Standard, the Austrian talked at length about the tournament that is so special to him.

"Vienna is a very big goal every year, so I only concentrate on that," the 27-year-old said. "I will go into the bubble tomorrow, have three or four good days of training on the field and see that I get close to my top form again for Tuesday."

Dominic Thiem also spoke about the heavily loaded draw that features World No. 1 Novak Djokovic as well as the likes of Stefanos Tsitsipas and Daniil Medvedev. Thiem claims he has never seen a main draw as star-studded at Vienna before.

"That (training) will be necessary in the field this year," the World No. 3 said. "I think I've never played such a strong tournament. It's absolute madness!"

Dominic Thiem arrives in Vienna on the back of a massively draining last few months. He defeated Alexander Zverev in five grueling sets to win his first Grand Slam title in New York, and then headed straight to play another Major at Roland Garros two weeks later.

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In Paris too, the US Open champion got past home favorite Hugo Gaston in five sets in the fourth round before losing to Diego Schwartzman 6-7 7-5 7-5 6-7 2-6 in the quarterfinal, bringing his brutal draw to a conclusion.

The Austrian claimed that he has physically and emotionally recovered from the feat, and that he is raring to start the indoor hardcourt season.

"But now I'm fine again," said Dominic Thiem, before reminiscing about last year's championship. "Last year was absolutely amazing. I think every match was sold out."

Thiem will also be playing doubles in Vienna, alongside Dennis Novak. Barring any fitness issues, he will then play the Paris Masters and the Nitto ATP Finals in London, where he was the finalist last year.

Published 23 Oct 2020, 19:28 IST
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