Dominic Thiem: Rafael Nadal, you are a true champion and an inspiration

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Dominic Thiem: Rafael Nadal, you are a true champion and an inspiration

Former world No. 3 Dominic Thiem called Rafael Nadal a "true champion and inspiration." Nadal, a former world No. 1, captured a record-breaking 21st Grand Slam title on Sunday. Nadal was on the verge of losing the Australian Open final but he pulled off a stunning comeback to beat world No.

2 Daniil Medvedev 2-6 6-7 (5) 6-4 6-4 7-5. Thiem, who suffered a wrist injury at the Mallorca Open in June, is hoping to return to action in February. Thiem is hoping to soon clash Nadal again. Thiem has had several great battles with Nadal as the Spaniard leads their head-to-head 9-6.

"The dream of every tennis player is to win a Grand Slam... but 21! You are a true champion and inspiration. Hope to share the court with you again soon," Thiem captioned his Instagram Story.

Nadal created a stunning comeback

Nadal had his back turned against the wall but he found a way to bounce back and win in five sets.

Medvedev was up by two sets, had a 3-2 lead in the third set and three consecutive break points in the sixth game. Nadal saved those three break points and the rest became history. “In that moment, of course, the situation was critical,” said Nadal, “but sport is unpredictable.

The normal thing is to lose the match in straight sets from that situation. On the other hand, I had a big chance in the second [set] too. “I was repeating to myself during the whole match, I lost a lot of times here [in Melbourne] having chances, sometimes I was a little bit unlucky.

I just wanted to keep believing until the end. I just wanted to give myself a chance. “That's what I did. Just fight, just keep belief in trying to find a solution. Of course, I was lucky to save that moment. [There were] a lot of moments that can decide the final like this”.

Dominic Thiem Rafael Nadal Australian Open