World No. 3 Dominic Thiem definitely won't be taking Felix Auger-Aliassime for granted when they meet in the US Open round-of-16 as he sees a ton of potential and talent in the game of the 20-year-old Canadian. After taking out former world No.
1 Andy Murray in straight sets, Auger-Aliassime beat rising French star Corentin Moutet to make the second week at the US Open. Thiem, seeded at No. 2, and world No. 21 Auger-Aliassime have no previous meetings. "I mean, I'm into tennis a lot.
Of course, I always know when there are very good young players coming up. It's the same with Carlos Alcaraz now. We know that these guys are going to be super good, that it's only a question of time until they get to the very top," Thiem said.
"With Felix it was the same. I think when he was only 16 or something he won his first challenger in France I remember. Then last year he played finals in the Rio, played great in Indian Wells, semis in Miami. He was right at the top.
"I mean, he's a great player, as I said. No real weaknesses. Great to watch. Great athlete, great person. The only thing what he's missing is the experience. That's what I'm trying to play for my advantage. It's not my first second week at a slam, but it's his.
That's probably my biggest advantage what I have in this match. "I'm looking forward to it. I'm always looking forward to play against these young superstars, as I'm 27 for a few days, not young any more.
I think going to be a great encounter."
Thiem also praised Marin Cilic
Thiem needed four sets to make it past 2014 US Open champion Cilic 6-2 6-2 3-6 6-3 in their US Open third round clash. "Today was a good match against a great champion.
First two sets came pretty easy. I think he came out a little bit slow also because of the tough matches he had in the opening rounds. He gave me some little mistakes," Thiem reflected on the Cilic win. "I had luck that I was breaking him in the opening games of the first two sets, which always helps a lot against these big servers.
Then he raised his level a lot in sets three and four. Good tennis, very close. Probably would have gone to a fifth when I don't save these breakpoints at I think was 2-All. "In general was a good, close match. I'm happy. But, yeah, of course I have to improve to get the chance to get further."