Last September, Dominic Thiem trailed two sets to love against Alexander Zverev in the US Open final. The German even served for the victory in the decider before the Austrian completed an incredible turnaround to cross the finish line in the tie break and celebrate the first Major title at 27.
Due to a wrist injury, Dominic will not defend the US Open title in a couple of weeks, staying away from the remaining events of the season and hoping to bounce back in 2022. The Austrian has no doubts about who will lift the trophy after him, naming Novak Djokovic as the player to beat in New York.
Alexander Zverev, Daniil Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrey Rublev will try to stun Novak. Still, Thiem believes he will not miss a chance of winning the calendar Grand Slam, calling it 'once in a century chance.'
As we all know, Novak has won all 21 matches at Majors in 2021, becoming the first player since Rod Laver in 1969 who won the season's opening three Majors and trying to complete the calendar Grand Slam in New York. Djokovic experienced the career's first default in New York last year against Pablo Carreno Busta and suffered a heavy loss to Rafael Nadal in the Roland Garros final in October, determined to change that in 2021.
Things did not look well for Djokovic following the Australian Open third-round clash against Taylor Fritz, prevailing in five sets but experiencing an abdominal injury that almost ruined his campaign. The Serb recovered and defeated Daniil Medvedev in the final to celebrate the 18th Major title, setting eyes at Roland Garros.
Dominic Thiem backs Novak Djokovic to achieve calendar Grand Slam.
Nadal defeated Novak in the Rome final, and Djokovic went on to win the next three tournaments and continue his brilliant run at Majors. He conquered the second Roland Garros crown to move closer to Federer and Nadal, overcoming two sets to love deficit twice and standing as the Wimbledon favorite.
Playing above his rivals, Djokovic toppled Denis Shapovalov and Matteo Berrettini from the semi-final round at the All England Club to celebrate the 20th Major trophy and even Rafael Nadal's and Roger Federer's record.
Novak will have an extra motive to produce his best tennis in New York following last year's setback, and he will be eager to regain form after two tough Olympic Games losses in July. "I think Novak Djokovic will not miss his chance in New York.
We are talking about the Grand Slam, and he has such an incredible will after having an opportunity of a century to complete the calendar Grand Slam. I think he won't miss it," Dominic Thiem said.