By winning the US Open a few weeks ago, Dominic Thiem became the first player born in the 90s to win a Grand Slam. In a sport that has been dominated by Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic over the past decade and a half, the Austrian's feat takes on even greater weight.
The World number 3 will also try to confirm himself at Roland Garros, where he reached the final in the last two editions always losing to Rafael Nadal. While Thiem's sudden rise poses a threat to the Big 3, it could have positive implications especially for Roger Federer.
The Swiss Grand Slam record is at serious risk, with Nadal likely to equal it in Paris in a few weeks. In a recent interview, former Olympic gold medalist Marc Rosset explained how Dominic’s entry represents great news for the eight-time Wimbledon champion.
Rosset on Roger Federer
“In short, we will only remember the name of the winner and it is, therefore, Dominic Thiem,” Marc Rosset wrote. “Bravo to him anyway. He deserves this title and he flew over the tournament before his initial crack in the final.
The one who can become the Andy Murray of the 2020s finally defeats the Indian sign (curse/bad luck) and we are counting on him to continue his momentum and confirm that he is indeed a great champion by going on to defeat Nadal and Djokovic on their surfaces,” Rosset added.
Rosset thus believes that Thiem is Roger Federer’s best bet to protect some of his records in tennis. “Let's be honest: the Austrian is Roger Federer's best ally today,” Rosset continued. “If the Master hopes to keep some of his records, he will have to count on Thiem in the next few years.
Federer has not played competitively since losing to Djokovic in the semi-finals of the Australian Open in January. “Roger Federer is injured and will not compete for the rest of the season,” Djokoivc said as quoted by the media in Serbia.
‘Still, I’m sure he will come back. “Regardless of his age, he’s always the favourite. You know, if he feels good physically, he should be up there fighting for the titles. Roger keeps on proving to everyone that he can make it, reaching Major finals in the last couple of years.
The race for most Major trophies is there, and it should be a great one if all three of us remain healthy for a couple more years”.