Dominic Thiem did not have the best start to the 2020 season, but the world No. 5 says he's feeling good ahead of the start of the Australian Open.
Thiem lost two of his three matches at the ATP Cup, against Borna Coric and Hubert Hurkacz, with his only victory coming against Diego Schwartzman in his second singles match. Austria failed to progress beyond the round robin phase of the tournament.
Despite his indifferent results in Sydney, Thiem felt he played at a good level in the tournament, and was happy to test himself against some of the best players in the world in the opening event of the season.
“[I’ve] got in some really good practices with the best players in the world,” Thiem said. “Preparation is going well. [I am] feeling good about the start [of the Australian Open].”
“I think maybe my first match [of the] ATP Cup was not as great, but it was still the first match of the year, where I always have some trouble,” Thiem said. “But [my] second and third matches were really decent. I played some good tennis.”
— Dominic Thiem (@ThiemDomi) January 14, 2020
Thiem is looking to build on a fine 2019, during which he claimed five titles, including a maiden Masters 1000 crown at Indian Wells. The Austrian reached the French Open final for the second straight season, but it was his improvements on hard courts that really caught the eye. Apart from Indian Wells, he added hard court titles in Beijing and Vienna, while he reached the final of the season-ending Nitto ATP Finals, beating Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic before losing a final set tie break to Stefanos Tsitsipas in the title match.
Keen to maintain that upward trajectory in 2020, Thiem has added legendary compatriot, Thomas Muster to his team, with the pair set to work together for 20 weeks this year. Nicolas Massu, who did such a tremendous job with the Austrian last year, remains in his coaching team.
Thiem’s next assignment will be to address an ordinary Australian Open record. In his six previous appearances, he has never gone beyond the fourth round. He is in the same quarter of the draw as world No. 1, Rafael Nadal, whom he could meet in the quarter finals, but he opens against Frenchman, Adrian Mannarino on Tuesday. The world No. 5 has beaten Mannarino in all of their previous seven meetings.