Austrian tennis star Dominic Thiem leads the preliminary entry list of the Generali Open in Kitzbuhel but his participation at the Austrian clay-court event remains a big doubt since it collides directly with the US Open.
Thiem, ranked at No. 3, is one of several top players that are willing to travel to New York and play the US Open, which takes place from August 31 - September 13, while the Generali Open in Kitzbuhel is scheduled to run between September 8-13.
Some high profile names appeared on the preliminary entry list of the Generali Open as the list also features Kei Nishikori, Borna Coric, Denis Shapovalov, Alex de Mibaur, Hubert Hurkacz, Fabio Fognini, Diego Schwartzman, Andrey Rublev, Cristian Garin, Richard Gasquet, Pablo Carreno Busta, Jan-Lennard Struff and Dusan Lajovic.
Of all the names that have appeared on the preliminary Kitzbuhel entry list, the tournament organizers would most certainly love the most to see Thiem playing the event.
Thiem, Nishikori, Coric, Shapovalov, de Minaur, Hurkacz, Fognini, Schwartzman, Rublev, Garin, Gasquet, Carreno Busta, Struff and Lajovic on the preliminary entry list of Generali Open in Kitzbuhel. — Michal Samulski (@MichalSamulski) August 9, 2020
Thiem, 26, debuted on the clay courts as a teenager as he suffered a first round defeat in Kitzbuhel in 2011 after being handed a wildcard. Last year, the Austrian's childhood wish of winning it all in front of his home fans became a reality when he beat Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas in the Kitzbuhel final.
Thiem plans to play the US Open
A number of players have expressed their concerns over playing in the United States -- the biggest name to have withdrawn from the US Open has been 19-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal.
But Thiem is willing to give a shot to the US Open, where he made the quarterfinal in 2018, before losing to world No. 2 Nadal in five tight sets. "Tennis is certainly one of the really big sports worldwide. And the others like Formula 1 and basketball have all started again.
So it's about time that tennis follows suit," Thiem told DerStandard, as quoted on Sportskeeda. There won't be spectators at the US Open and players will be limited to a small number of entourage. "No spectators, just a very, very small team, otherwise only in the hotel.
It will be a very, very new experience for all of us,” Thiem said. Thiem admits it will be a good chance to finally win his maiden Grand Slam title. "I have to be honest, some of the top players will definitely cancel.
That means that a possible way to get far at this tournament would be worth less than normal than it was in Australia. Still, I'm looking forward to it," Thiem said.