Dominic Thiem ‘right up there with the Big Three’, says tennis pundit and former world No 1

Dominic Thiem pleased

Former world No 1 Mats Wilander believes Dominic Thiem “is definitely a little bit better than the other guys” and is “right up there” with the likes of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

Thiem looked the part during his US Open semi-final against Daniil Medvedev as he brushed aside last year’s runner-up in three sets to secure a fourth Grand Slam final with Alexander Zverev standing between him and a first major title.

The Austrian lost his previous three Slam finals – two against Nadal at the French Open and this year’s Australian Open against Djokovic – but Eurosport analyst Wilander says the world No 3 is a step ahead of his “Next Gen” peers at the moment.

“I think the maturity levels of Thiem are so high compared to where it has been,” Wilander said.

“He’s so good right now and you can see he is literally right up there with the Big Three – he just hasn’t won anything yet.

“It was a little unexpected that he won tonight’s match in three sets, for sure.

“I thought Medvedev would be a little closer but you look at he did have a chance to win two sets. But Thiem is definitely a little bit better than the other guys for me.

“Dominic didn’t panic. He was keeping the ball in play, he was playing smart off his backhand side, with a lot of sliced backhands that kept the ball low which is tough for Medvedev because he doesn’t hit the ball with a lot of spin.

“I think he played within himself and he played smart and he played high percentage tennis. It would have been easy to just panic but he didn’t.”

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