110 Matches Later: Why Dominic Thiem Is A Player That Inspires - UBITENNIS
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110 Matches Later: Why Dominic Thiem Is A Player That Inspires

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Work, work and work in the motto of rising star Dominic Thiem. Known by many for his hectic schedule on the tour, the mindset and determination of the 23-year-old is one that can inspire future generations.

 

Thiem played his 110th match of 2016 against Gael Monfils in the ATP Finals on Tuesday (winning in three sets). It can be forgiven to expect the Austrian to be sluggish and wishing he was at home in bed after such a busy year. Nevertheless, Thiem’s passion to succeed is no less now than it was when he started his season in Brisbane.

“If I would have played less, I wouldn’t be here at the Finals. This was one of the reasons why I’m here, because I was playing a lot.” Said Thiem.

The work ethic of Thiem is one that he has always stuck to. When Gunther Bresnik spoke with Ubitennis in June, it was one of the first things he spoke about. At the time Bresnik was coaching the Austrian as well as Ernests Gulbis. According to him, Gulbis was the one with the natural talent, but Thiem was the one committed to succeed

“If you consider working ethics, patience for the game and everything, Dominic is on top of a few other guys. He’s not gifted in a way that he doesn’t need to do anything, but he wins a lot. Whatever he achieves in his career is through a lot of work.” Said Brenik.

Claiming four titles on three different surfaces this year, Thiem made his top 10 debut in June after reaching his first grand slam quarter-final at the French Open. Since then, the Austrian has maintained his position amongst the world’s top elite.

Ironically, it wasn’t his high match participation rate that secured his place in the year-end event. Thiem also benefited from the withdrawal of the higher ranked Rafael Nadal to make his debut at the O2 Arena. Despite that stroke of luck, he has already displayed characteristics of a player that belongs in the event.

“I feel like I belong here. It doesn’t matter if I was (ranked) nine or eight or one, it’s very nice to get a win here.” He said shortly after defeating Monfils.

Now playing alongside the titans of men’s tennis, will 2017 bring a new approach to the tour for Thiem? Those expecting him to dramatically slash his schedule might be disappointed. A player who thrives off playing matches and working hard, it is only inevitable what will happen.

“Maybe I will play a little less, but also maybe not. I think also the body and the mind and everything gets used to it. It was my first year that I played over 80 matches.” He said.
“I think it’s really normal. I think that if I play the same amount of matches and tournaments next year, I will be used to it much better than this year.”

Thiem’s continuous work and dedication to the game is one that rightfully earned him a rapidly growing fan base. It is an example for fans to admire and for aspiring players to follow. This year Thiem has been the definition of ‘hard work pays off.’

Dominic Thiem’s 110 matches in 2016 (as of 15/11/2016)

Singles
Titles: Buenos Aires (clay), Acapulco (hard), Nice (clay) and Stuttgart Outdoor (grass).
Wins: 58 matches
Lose: 23 matches

Doubles
Titles: 0
Wins: 12 matches
Loss: 17 matches

Combined winning rate: 63.6%.

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Iga Swiatek Demands Talks With ITF And WTA After Withdrawing From Billie Jean King Cup

Iga Swiatek is not happy with the ITF and WTA after withdrawing from the Billie Jean King Cup Finals.

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Iga Swiatek (@IgaSwi_France - Twitter)

The world number one has announced that she will not compete at the Billie Jean King Cup Finals in November after criticising tennis’ governing bodies for not looking after player welfare.

 

The event is set to take place the week after the WTA Finals in Glasgow which causes a huge problem and obstacle for many players.

This is definitely the case for Swiatek who has qualified for the WTA Finals which takes place in Texas on the 31st of October.

A huge dilemma which now means Swiatek will not compete for her country at the Billie Jean King Cup.

Speaking on Instagram the Pole criticised the decision from the ITF and WTA and wants to speak to them about player welfare to prevent future decisions from happening, “I was thinking it through a lot and discussing it with my team all over again, but I will not be able to play at the Billie Jean King Cup in Glasgow,” Swiatek said in her Instagram story.

“And it makes me sad. I’m very sorry because I play for Poland whenever it’s possible and I always give it my best. Playing in Poland this year was an honour and I hoped to do this again at the end of the season.

“I’m disappointed that tennis governing bodies didn’t come to an agreement on something as basic as the calendar of tournaments, giving us only one day to travel through the globe and changing the time zone. This situation is not safe for our health and could cause injury.

“I’m going to talk to the WTA and ITF in order to change something. This situation is difficult not only for the players like me, but mainly for the tennis fans that support our fans.”

It’s clear Swiatek wants change in terms of player welfare and communication between governing bodies on how to facilitate the schedule.

However Swiatek now turns her attention to preparing for the WTA Finals and first up for the Pole is Ostrava this week.

In her opening match Swiatek will face either Ajla Tomljanovic or Shuai Zhang.

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Cameron Norrie Withdraws From Tokyo After COVID Positive Test

Cameron Norrie will miss the rest of the Asian swing due to COVID.

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Cameron Norrie (@the_LTA - Twitter)

After withdrawing from his quarter-final in Seoul, Cameron Norrie has now withdrawn from the ATP 500 event in Tokyo.

 

The Brit’s absence from the latter stages of the ATP 250 event in South Korea, raised eyebrows with Norrie suffering from illness.

However Norrie then withdraw from the ATP 500 event in Tokyo where he was due to play Thanasi Kokkinakis.

Now his absence has been explained as Norrie confirmed on social media that he tested positive for COVID-19.

In a statement originally posted on Instagram, Norrie explained he had no symptoms but has to quarantine in his hotel room in Seoul, “Unfortunately I had a positive COVID test in Korea and wasn’t able to compete in the rest of my matches,” Norrie said.

“I have no symptoms and I am feeling 100%. It’s been a complicated situation and I appreciate the Republic of Korea trying their best to be amicable in a very tough situation.

“I was really hoping to go to Tokyo but because of the quarantine period I will not be able to play there. Looking forward to getting back to Europe for the indoors. See you guys soon!”

This is the second time Norrie has tested positive for COVID with the first time being before the start of the season.

Norrie’s scheduled next tournament will be in Stockholm which will take place on the 17th of October.

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Carlos Alcaraz Faces Rune Test In Astana

Carlos Alcaraz leads a stacked field in Astana next week.

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Carlos Alcaraz (@WeAreTennis - Twitter)

Carlos Alcaraz returns to the ATP tour next week in Astana next week where he faces Danish talent Holger Rune.

 

The world number one plays his first ATP tournament since winning his first Grand Slam title at the US Open and becoming the youngest world number one in history.

Having qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals, Alcaraz will now look to build momentum over the coming weeks for the event in Turin.

First up for Alcaraz is the ATP 500 event in Astana next week where the Spaniard faces a tough opening round in the form of Danish talent Holger Rune.

The Dane reached his first Grand Slam quarter-final at Roland Garros earlier this year but had struggled for form since then.

However Rune has reached the semi-finals in Sofia this week and is hitting form at the right time so this will be a big test for Alcaraz.

Should Alcaraz get through that test than a potential second round meeting with Stan Wawrinka could be on the cards with the Swiss wildcard facing Adrian Mannarino in his opening match.

Andrey Rublev is the player that could face Alcaraz in the last eight with the eighth seed facing a qualifier in his opening round match.

Rublev is one of a number of players who are chasing the remaining spots at the Nitto ATP Finals.

Also in the top half of the draw is Stefanos Tsitsipas and Hubert Hurkacz with Tsitsipas facing Mikhail Kukushkin.

While Hurkacz faces Francisco Cerundolo and a potential second round match against home favourite Alexander Bublik could await in round two.

In the bottom half of the draw, Novak Djokovic will continue his search for a surge up the rankings against Cristian Garin.

Djokovic’s potential quarter-final is Jannik Sinner who begins against tricky serve and volleyer Oscar Otte.

Daniil Medvedev is also taking part in a stacked field in Astana as he faces Albert Ramos-Vinolas in his opening round match.

In the bottom quarter there is also an intriguing opening round match between Felix Auger-Aliassime and Roberto Bautista Agut.

Here is the full draw with play starting on Monday:

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