Dominic Thiem Feels Federer Is Being Underestimated In Madrid, But Does He Agree? - UBITENNIS
Connect with us

ATP

Dominic Thiem Feels Federer Is Being Underestimated In Madrid, But Does He Agree?

In his comeback week to the clay, should the 20-time grand slam champion be considered a serious contender on the surface?

Published

on

Roger Federer (photo by Roberto Dell Olivo)

MADRID: This week might be the first time Roger Federer has played a clay-court tournament in almost three years, but Dominic Thiem has vowed to take nothing for granted.

 

The Austrian will be the next test for the Swiss Maestro at the Caja Magica on Friday. Thiem is currently on a seven-match winning streak after triumphing at the Barcelona Open. Where he defeated Rafael Nadal in the semi-finals. He already has a win over Federer this year after triumphing in Indian Wells to claim his maiden Masters title at the age of 25.

With all things considered, it is fair to say that Thiem has a strong chance of victory in his upcoming match. However, he refuses to get carried away when it comes to locking horns with the most decorated grand slam singles champion in the history of men’s tennis.

“I think a lot of people underestimate him on the clay. He’s an unbelievable player. Only Rafa is better, I guess. I need to invest 100 percent to have a chance of winning.” Thiem told Ubitennis in Madrid.

Thiem’s view does raise a valid point. Has Federer’s credentials on the clay been forgotten? It is true that he has endured a lengthy absence from the surface, but he knows how to play on the clay. So far in his career, he has won 11 titles on the dirt. Six of which were at Masters level and one at the 2009 French Open.

Shortly after his gripping win over Gael Monfils, Federer was asked if he agreed with Thiem’s view about being underestimated by others.

“I don’t think anybody’s really underestimating me because I’m not coming back from an injury. I’ve had a good start to the season this year.” Said Federer. “It is pretty fast here in Madrid and I’ve won here in the past, so I guess players maybe know I don’t have that much clay court tennis in me in the last few years, but that doesn’t make me less dangerous to be quite honest.”

In their head-to-head Thiem leads the world No.3. Impressively scoring wins over him on the grass, hard court and clay. A rare achievement that is matched by only a select few players in the sport.

“I’m not the favorite against him. I think it will be a pretty open match.” Thiem previewed. “If we both play well as we did in Indian Wells, it going to be a great battle. If I play slightly worse, he is going to win it for sure.“

Meanwhile, Federer has hailed the achievements of his younger rival. However, when it comes to the ultimate test on the clay for him, the honor still belongs to Nadal in his eyes.

“Thiem has been playing great. Recently, winning Barcelona and also Indian Wells. I also saw what he could do on the slower, harder courts, not that I needed him to prove his point. But I think beating Rafa in Barcelona is a feat in itself. I still believe that Rafa is the measuring stick and not Dominic.” He stated.

The match between Thiem and Federer will take place, not before 17:00 local time on Friday.

List of ATP Finals Federer has played on the clay

Win May 2002 German Open, Germany Masters Clay  Marat Safin 6–1, 6–3, 6–4
Win May 2003 Bavarian Championships, Germany International Clay  Jarkko Nieminen 6–1, 6–4
Loss May 2003 Italian Open, Italy Masters Clay  Félix Mantilla 5–7, 2–6, 6–7(8–10)
Loss Jul 2003 Swiss Open, Switzerland International Clay  Jiří Novák 7–5, 3–6, 3–6, 6–1, 3–6
Win May 2004 German Open, Germany (2) Masters Clay  Guillermo Coria 4–6, 6–4, 6–2, 6–3
Win Jul 2004 Gstaad, Switzerland International Clay  Igor Andreev 6–2, 6–3, 5–7, 6–3
Win May 2005 German Open, Germany (3) Masters Clay  Richard Gasquet 6–3, 7–5, 7–6(7–4)
Loss Apr 2006 Monte-Carlo Masters, Monaco Masters Clay  Rafael Nadal 2–6, 7–6(7–2), 3–6, 6–7(5–7)
Loss May 2006 Italian Open, Italy Masters Clay  Rafael Nadal 7–6(7–0), 6–7(5–7), 4–6, 6–2, 6–7(5–7)
Loss June 2006 French Open, France Grand Slam Clay  Rafael Nadal 6–1, 1–6, 4–6, 6–7(4–7)
Loss Apr 2007 Monte-Carlo Masters, Monaco Masters Clay  Rafael Nadal 4–6, 4–6
Win May 2007 German Open, Germany (4) Masters Clay  Rafael Nadal 2–6, 6–2, 6–0
Loss Jun 2007 French Open, France Grand Slam Clay  Rafael Nadal 3–6, 6–4, 3–6, 4–6
Win Apr 2008 Portugal Open, Portugal International Clay  Nikolay Davydenko 7–6(7–5), 1–2 ret.
Loss Apr 2008 Monte-Carlo Masters, Monaco Masters Clay  Rafael Nadal 5–7, 5–7
Loss May 2008 German Open, Germany Masters Clay  Rafael Nadal 5–7, 7–6(7–3), 3–6
Loss Jun 2008 French Open, France Grand Slam Clay  Rafael Nadal 1–6, 3–6, 0–6
Win May 2009 Madrid Open, Spain (2) Masters 1000 Clay  Rafael Nadal 6–4, 6–4
Win Jun 2009 French Open, France Grand Slam Clay  Robin Söderling 6–1, 7–6(7–1), 6–4
Loss May 2010 Madrid Open, Spain Masters 1000 Clay  Rafael Nadal 4–6, 6–7(5–7)
Loss Jun 2011 French Open, France Grand Slam Clay  Rafael Nadal 5–7, 6–7(3–7), 7–5, 1–6
Win May 2012 Madrid Open, Spain (3) Masters 1000 Clay  Tomáš Berdych 3–6, 7–5, 7–5
Loss May 2013 Italian Open, Italy Masters 1000 Clay  Rafael Nadal 1–6, 3–6
Loss Apr 2014 Monte-Carlo Masters, Monaco Masters 1000 Clay  Stan Wawrinka 6–4, 6–7(5–7), 2–6
Win May 2015 Istanbul Open, Turkey 250 Series Clay  Pablo Cuevas 6–3, 7–6(13–11)
Loss May 2015 Italian Open, Italy Masters 1000 Clay  Novak Djokovic 4–6, 3–6

ATP

Alexander Zverev edged past Hugo Dellien to reach the semifinal in Geneva

Published

on

World number 5 and 2018 Nitto ATP Finals champion Alexander Zverev battled past Bolivian player Hugo Dellien 7-5 3-6 6-3 to reach the semifinal at the Banque Eric Sturdza Geneva Open. Zverev is still seeking his first title of the year.

 

Dellien earned the first break in the second game to take a 3-0 lead. Zverev converted his fourth break-back chance in the fifth game and held his serve to draw level to 3-3. Zverev saved a set point at 3-5 at 3-5, while Dellien was serving at 40-30.

Dellien needed one break in the fourth game to win the second set 6-3. Zverev held serve in the third game at the seventh deuce after seven deuces to take a 2-1 lead. The German player got the decisive break in the fourth game and held his serve at love to build up a 4-1 lead. Zverev never looked back to win the third set 6-3.

“I played very aggressive in the important moments. I was very aggressive also in break points down, This is finally something I was looking for in the last few weeks. I think today I showed it”, said Zverev.

Radu Albot came back from 2-4 down to beat Damir Dzumhur 6-3 7-5. Albot went up a double break in the third and fifth games to open up a 4-1 lead. Dzumhur pulled one break back in the sixth game for 2-4, but Albot broke for the third time on her third break point chance to win the first set 6-3.

Dzumhur went up an early break in the first game of the second set. Albot broke back in the eight game to draw level to 4-4 and sealed the win with his second break in the 10th game.

Albot will take on Nicolas Jarry, who dropped just four of his first service points to defeat Taro Daniel 6-1 7-5.

 

 

Continue Reading

ATP

Nikoloz Basilashvili sets up Lyon semifinal against Felix Auger Aliassime

Published

on

Four-time ATP Tour finalist Nikoloz Basilashvili secured his spot in the semifinal where he will face Felix Auger Aliassime in Lyon

 

Basilashvili came back from an early break down to beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-4 6-4 in the quarter final of the Parc Auvergne Rhone Alpes Lyon.

Tsonga got an early break in the second game to take a 2-0 lead, but Basilashvili recovered from the early start by breaking serve twice in the third and seventh games to take a 4-3 lead. The Georgian player held his final two service games at 30 to close out the opening set 6-4.

Basilashvili needed only a break in the third game of the second set to clinch the second set 6-4 to reach his first semifinal since winning the China Open in 2018.

Basilashvili set up a semifinal clash against this year’s Rio de Janeiro finalist and Miami Open champion Felix Auger Aliassime, who edged Steve Johnson 6-4 2-6 6-4. Auger Aliassime got a break of serve in the third game to clinch the opening set 6-4. Johnson bounced back by breaking twice in the second and eighth game to claim the second set 6-2. Auger Aliassime went up a double break in the third and fifth games to build up a 5-2 lead, but Johnson pulled one break back in the eighth game, when the 18-year-old player was serving for the match. Auger Aliassime served out for the match 6-4 in the 10th game.

Benoit Paire battled past Denis Shapovalov 6-3 4-6 7-6 (7-4) in 1 hour and 55 minutes. Paire broke serve twice in the fifth and ninth games to seal the opening set 6-3. Shapovalov claimed his only break in the fifth game to win the second set 6-4. Paire saved a total of three break points in the first and third games. Both players held on their service games en route to the tie-break. Paire reeled off the final three points from 4-4 to claim the tie-break 7-4.

Taylor Fritz fought back from one set down to beat Roberto Bautista Agut 6-7 (6-8) 6-3 6-4 after two hours and five minutes. Bautista Agut fended off one set point at 5-6 to take the tie-break of the opening set. Fritz fought back to open up a 3-0 lead with a break in the second game to claim the second set 6-4. The US player earned the decisive break in he ninth game to secure his spot in his first semifinal since the 2018 Chengdu Open.

 

 

Continue Reading

ATP

Tomas Berdych to Miss French Open For The First Time Since 2003

It will be the third grand slam the former top 10 player has missed within the past 12 months.

Published

on

Tomas Berdych (photo by chryslène caillaud)

Former Wimbledon runner-up Tomas Berdych will not play any clay court tournaments in 2019 after withdrawing from the upcoming French Open.

 

The 33-year-old has been absent from the tour since his first round loss to Feliciano Lopez in Indian Wells. Berdych has been hampered by issues within his back in recent weeks. He has been hoping to be fit in time for Roland Garros, but made a decision to withdraw from the event on Wednesday.

“I am not 100% ready to play the way I want and need to be competitive on the courts I love so much,” Berdych wrote on social media.
“I came to Paris and I had to take a tough decision and want another few days to fully recover and be ready for the grass season.”
“I love this tournament so much but I have to make sure not to further injure myself,” he added.

The Czech had played at the tournament every year since making his debut back in 2004. However, the French Open is his worst performing grand slam in terms of wins. So far in his career, Berdych has won 25 out of 40 matches played at the French Open. His stand out performance occurred in 2010 when he reached the semi-finals before losing to Sweden’s Robin Soderling.

It is not the first time back issues have forced Berdych out of action. In 2017 he was advised by doctors to end his season early due to persistent ‘back pain.’ He was also forced to skip both Wimbledon and the US Open due to the same problem.

Berdych, who last won a title at the 2016 Shenzhen Open, has played six tournaments so far this year. His best result occurred in January with a run to the final of the Qatar Open. He also reached the fourth round of the Australian Open and was a semi-finalist in Montpellier.

As a result of his absence, Berdych is currently ranked 100th in the world rankings. He will be replaced in the French Open draw by a lucky loser.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending