Former world No. 3 Dominic Thiem has accepted a main draw wildcard into the Winston-Salem Open, the tournament announced. Thiem, 28, is set to make his main draw debut on the hard courts of Winston-Salem this year. Thiem appeared once in Winston-Salem but failed to make the main draw.
In 2012, an 18-year-old Thiem tried to reach the Winston-Salem main draw through the qualifying event. Unfortunately for Thiem, he had the bad luck of drawing former top-10 player Ernests Gulbis and losing in the qualifying first round.
Now, 10 years later, Thiem is set to make his main draw debut in Winston-Salem. The Winston-Salem Open takes place the week before the US Open, between August 21-27.
Thiem still playing on clay
Thiem hasn't turned his focus on the preparation for the North American hard court swing, which kicked off this week.
This week, Thiem is playing an ATP 250 tournament in Kitzbuhel. On Tuesday, Thiem made a positive start to his Kitzbuhel campaign as he beat Alexander Shevchenko 6-4 6-2. Thiem missed out on seven break points before finally breaking Shevchenko in the seventh game.
After the win, 2019 Kitzbuhel champion Thiem admitted he was "very nervous" in his return to Kitzbuhel. “I was very, very nervous because even though the past weeks were better and better, I’m still not like two or three years ago when everything was going by itself somehow,” Thiem said in his on-court interview.
“My goal was to be able to give a good show, to give good tennis to this amazing crowd and I’m happy that I was able to do it”. Kitzbuhel was cancelled in 2020 because of the pandemic, while Thiem didn't compete at the tournament last year because of a wrist injury.
“Obviously the way I walked in with the atmosphere, with all the memories with the full centre court, it was unreal and it gave me goosebumps. I’m super happy to be the winner tonight," Thiem added.