“That’s the absolute minimum goal, I’m still around 100 points short. I don’t want it to be like this year, where I need a wildcard and don’t know whether I’m in.” His actual plan, of course, is to achieve such a good ranking this year that he can be in all of his tournaments election in the main competition. Especially for the big tournaments like at the Masters 1000 level, for example after Vienna in Paris, he still has to improve.
Basically, he is confident that after the break due to a stomach infection, he will quickly regain his form from the Kitzbühel week and also after the first round of the US Open, said Thiem. “The final in Kitzbühel gave me a real boost. Since then I have felt a lot more comfortable on the pitch. That’s why I’m confident that if my stomach and body are okay, I’ll play well again.”
Ofner beats Thiem in the Astana quarter-finals
Sebastian Ofner is in the semi-finals of the ATP 250 tournament in Astana. Ofner prevails in the Austrian duel against Dominic Thiem in three sets.
Slight adaptation of the playing style
The 2020 US Open winner was convinced of the collaboration with his coach Benjamin Ebrahimzadeh in a media round in the second week of September. No coach could change his basic game much, but one also had to improvise since he was now 30 or older.
“We might have to see that I keep the rallies a little shorter, become more aggressive, go to the net more and so on. I know that Benni has a perfect plan for what the game should look like. He also has a lot of experience with players of all ages. We have a precise plan.”
It has worked well so far, as the example of Kitzbühel shows. Of course, the conditions in Kitzbühel would suit him, as well as in Vienna, where he wants to succeed from October 24th. “The surface in Vienna, the balls really suit me, the whole bounce behavior.”
Mental coach and tournament companion
There is also the input from mental coach Andreas Marlovits, the Burgenland native should continue to take part in tournaments. Thiem: “Doing the right thing in tight situations is something I’ve lost a bit of. Now I’m more and more able to get this ability. Kitzbühel was the perfect proof of this.”
The quarter-final exit in Astana against his “stable colleague” Sebastian Ofner came a little too early for Thiem and his fans’ taste. In the ATP ranking he has initially improved from 81st to 72nd place, but the race provides more information about 2023 in this phase. In this, the Lichtenwörther native is in 102nd place, and something still has to happen with regard to Melbourne.
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