Austrian tennis star Dominic Thiem acknowledged the greatness of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray after finishing runner-up at the Nitto ATP Finals as the Austrian noted it's up to the young generation to step up and promote the game in the best possible way.
Thiem, ranked at No. 3 in the world, finished runner-up at the Nitto ATP Finals in back-to-back years as on Sunday world No. 4 Daniil Medvedev recovered from a set down to beat the Austrian in the final 4-6 7-6 (2) 6-4. Medvedev went perfect 5-0 at the Nitto ATP Finals this year and his run to the title included victories over 20-time Grand Slam champion Nadal and world No.
1 Djokovic. "Roger, Rafa, Nole and also Andy, they did so much for the sport. I think they brought so many people to tennis, so many new fans to tennis," Thiem said, per Tennis Majors. "And as I said, there is going to be a time when they are not around anymore, and then it's going to be so important to keep all the tennis fans, to keep them with this great sport.
"I think that's our challenge, that we perform well, that we play great in big tournaments, that we become huge stars ourself. It's super important for tennis in general, because, I mean, they gave so much to the sport."
Thiem gave credit to Medvedev
Medvedev, who didn't win a single match in his Nitto ATP Finals debut last year, delivered an outstanding tennis at The O2 Arena in his second appearance at the tournament. "If you look at the whole tournament, he was the best player,” Thiem said.
“He didn’t lose a set in the group stage. Beat No. 2 and No. 3 players in the world in the semis and in the final, so he definitely deserved that title”. After winning the title, Medvedev spoke positively of Thiem.
"What a match. One of my best victories, two hours [and] 42 [minutes], three sets against an amazing player," Medvedev said. "Dominic, congratulations already for what you achieved in your career. Your name is already in the history of tennis books.
It is amazing. You won a Grand Slam this year. You are playing unbelievable. I hope we are going to have many more matches to come on the big occasions like this."