World No. 3 Dominic Thiem acknowledged that he was on the verge of losing to Nick Kyrgios at Melbourne Park as he spoke highly of the Australian after their clash. Thiem, who finished runner-up at the Australian Open last year, recovered from two sets down to beat home favorite Kyrgios 4-6 4-6 3-6 6-4 6-4 to progress into the round-of-16 at Melbourne Park.
“I was already dealing with the loss, you know, it was first of all the first match against Nick and here on is favourite court with an amazing crowd,” Thiem said after the match, per Tennis Majors. “I think there are easier things to do!
So for sure that’s one of the tougher challenges we have in our sport as you never know what’s coming. He’s a huge player when he’s on fire like today, so honestly I was dealing with the loss already, but somehow I was fighting myself in the match and since the US Open, you know impossible is nothing”.
Thiem showed great mental strength
After falling two sets down, Thiem broke Kyrgios early in the third set to take a 3-0 lead and then held on to his serve to force a fourth set. In the fourth set, the Austrian broke the Australian in the ninth game for a 5-4 lead, before serving out for a decider in the following game.
The lone break of the fifth set came in the seventh game, when Thiem broke Kyrgios to earn the key break of the match. “That match showed me, that US Open, that giving up is never an option, there is always a chance as today I was so close to losing.
If he breaks me in the first game in the third set the match is over. But I was fighting still and then with the break in the third set I realised that maybe there’s a chance to turn it around,'' Thiem said.