“Everything is So Close”: Dominic Thiem Predicts Tough Battles For World No.1 Spot

Published 11/23/2020, 7:00 AM EST
Tennis – ATP Finals – The O2, London, Britain – November 22, 2020 Austria’s Dominic Thiem in action during his final match against Russia’s Daniil Medvedev Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

Reigning US Open men’s champion Dominic Thiem has said that with the tennis pool replete with stalwarts and emerging superstars, it won’t be easy beating the big names going forward.


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Thiem lost the title showdown at the ATP Finals to Russian Daniil Medvedev on Sunday.

Tennis – ATP Finals – The O2, London, Britain – November 22, 2020 Russia’s Daniil Medvedev shakes hands with Austria’s Dominic Thiem as he celebrates winning their final match Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

Road to victory tougher against bigger talent pool, says Dominic Thiem


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He said finishing on the winning side won’t get any easier as a host of emerging talents are pushing the big stars for glory.


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“Everything is so close. Rafa (Rafael Nadal) and Nole (Novak Djokovic) are up there still. Roger (Federer) is coming back next year,” Thiem said.

This is the tennis of a champion. 🙌@emirates | #FlyEmiratesFlyBetter pic.twitter.com/nSd5U9uGFW

— ATP Tour (@atptour) November 22, 2020

He named six to seven players who he believes will vie for big titles and top-ranking points in the seasons ahead.

“Guys like Dan (Daniil Medvedev) and Sascha (Alexander Zverev), Stefanos (Tsitsipas), and since this year also (Andrey) Rublev, there are I think six, seven guys who will fight for the top spots the next years,” the Austrian said.

Thiem optimistic about new season

Looking back on a season marred by the novel coronavirus pandemic, Thiem said he hoped the next year will see an element of normality return to sports.

THE LAST KING OF LONDON 👑 @DaniilMedwed defeats Thiem 4-6 7-6 6-4 to become the 2020 #NittoATPFinals CHAMPION! pic.twitter.com/0o6AgKaQPu

— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) November 22, 2020

“I think it is still a very tough year for many, many people. We athletes, and I’m speaking of tennis players, we are very privileged to do our jobs,” the Austrian said.

He said he was hopeful that the pandemic will soon pass and people will be able to return to their normal lives.

2020 will remain a special year to the Austrian

Thiem said tough as it is, 2020 will remain a special year for him.


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“Even though it’s a tough year, it will always have a special place in my heart this year, 100 percent. But beside that, I hope that this pandemic is going to come to an end very soon, that people can start to work again, can have a normal life again, and I hope that it’s coming, well, to an end as soon as possible,” Thiem said.

Coming off an injury-induced lay-off which saw him miss the Paris Masters, Thiem beat Stefanos Tsitsipas and Nadal in London on the way to the final.


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Also a finalist last year, Thiem couldn’t clinch his maiden Finals title in the second straight year as a red-hot Medvedev beat him in three sets.


Priyabrata Chowdhury

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Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.