What’s Next For Dominic Thiem After Heart-Wrenching French Open 2021 Exit?

Published 06/03/2021, 8:54 AM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 30, 2021 Austria’s Dominic Thiem reacts during his first round match against Spain’s Pablo Andujar REUTERS/Christian Hartmann


‘I fell into a hole’ said Dominic Thiem, a few months back after suffering disappointing early-round exits from the 2021 Australian Open, Doha Open, and Dubai Championships. However, Thiem’s shocking first-round crash from the ongoing French Open is the lowest ebb of his career.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Thiem, despite winning the opening two sets, ended up relinquishing the two-set lead and suffered an agonizing defeat to Pablo Andújar in the first round. This loss was the worst performance of the two-time French Open finalist at the tournament since his debut in 2014.

Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 30, 2021 Austria’s Dominic Thiem reacts during his first round match against Spain’s Pablo Andujar REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

In fact, just days after the debacle, the Austrian and his manager Herwig Straka have parted ways, bringing their two-year association to an end.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The road ahead for Dominic Thiem

After winning his maiden Grand Slam at the 2020 US Open, many dubbed Thiem as the player who would break the dominance of the Big-3 and primed to win the biggest titles.

However, the 27-year-old’s poor movement, lack of accuracy, recent mental struggles, and physical issues have overpowered him lately. With still half the season left, Thiem would have to correct the broken pieces in his game before the start of the 2021 Wimbledon Championships.

Before Wimbledon, the holder of 17 ATP singles titles, might play at Stuttgart and Halle to kick off his preparations for the All-England Club. So far, at Wimbledon, Thiem hasn’t gone beyond the fourth round, in fact, he has crashed out of the opening round in his last two attempts.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

DOHA, QATAR – MARCH 11: Dominic Thiem of Austria reacts during his quarter final match with Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain in the Qatar ExxonMobil Open at Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex on March 11, 2021 in Doha, Qatar. (Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images)

After the grass-court Grand Slam, Thiem would head for the Tokyo Olympics which would mark his debut at the quadrennial multi-sport event. Having expressed his desire of winning a medal at the Olympics, Thiem needs to make huge strides until then to have any chances.

However, for the Austrian, the most important part of the season would begin prior to the US Open with the start of two-back-to-back tournaments at Montreal and Cincinnati. At the 2021 US Open, for the first time in his career, Thiem would enter a Grand Slam as a defending champion, which could add pressure on the already confidence-stripped tennis star.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Considering his mental and physical struggles continue to plague him, the road ahead for Thiem could get increasingly challenging. However, nothing would be better for the tennis fans than to witness Thiem back in form and light up the court with his exquisite shot-making.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Kshitij Tayal

392 articles

Kshitij Tayal is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having played district-level tennis competitions, Kshitij is also a tenured journalist of the sport with over four years of experience. At EssentiallySports, he pens down some thought-provoking pieces on players and tournaments across the ATP and WTA.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT