Benoit Paire Thiem

‘Everybody can think and act differently’ – Benoit Paire responds to criticism by Dominic Thiem

Benoit Paire has responded to Dominic Thiem criticising his recent conduct and decision to continue playing while unmotivated.

The Frenchman said he doesn’t have any problems with what the world No. 4 said, but that “everybody can think and act differently.”

In an interview with El Pais, Thiem acknowledged the difficulty of bubble restrictions and playing with no crowds, but said he does not understand Paire’s actions and unsportsmanlike conduct.

The Austrian said: “If you don’t want to play, you stay at home. If you are not motivated, nobody forces you to play.”

Paire addressed Thiem’s comments on Twitter: “I had to work to take some holidays. Happy to see you (Thiem) back on tour.

“I don’t have any problems with what you said, everybody can think and act differently.”

World No. 35 Paire will play Nikoloz Basilashvili in the first round of the Madrid Open on Tuesday.

The 31-year-old has struggled greatly since the ATP tour resumed after a COVID-enforced break last year – losing 16 of his 18 matches.