Thiem Australian Open 2021

‘I’m fine again, I’m normal again’, insists Dominic Thiem after struggles

Dominic Thiem said he feels “well again” with his shots and footwork after struggling with his game and motivation this year.

The world No. 5 opened up about feeling “emptiness” at the Australian Open in February after his maiden Grand Slam victory at last year’s US Open.

The Austrian took a six-week break after Dubai before returning in Madrid – but had a subpar clay court season by his high standards.

Thiem will play his first match since losing in the French Open first round at the Mallorca Championships ATP 250 today.

“Straight after Roland Garros I was going back on a practice court for almost two weeks on a hard court, still at home, just to fix my shots again, because they were not as they should be in the clay court season,” Thiem said in a pre-tournament interview.

“Now I feel well again with my shots, with my footwork. I practised two days in Austria on grass courts and already four days in Mallorca and I feel pretty well. But on grass, you never know what is going to happen.

“The most important for me was to fix my shots, to improve my footwork, to move well again on the court and that’s what I did in Austria. It’s pretty normal. It happens. You’re working very hard for a certain goal, a big goal and then you finally reach it.

“In my case, [it was] after three lost [Grand Slam] finals before, so it was such a huge goal to reach and such a huge relief as well. After that, I started to think a little bit and I had a little bit of a lack of motivation as well.

“But with time passing by, it got better and better again. And now, I’m fine again, I’m normal again. I couldn’t play well enough for the French Open. Grass, you never know what’s happening, so you are just trying to gain some confidence, to practise very hard, to play well in matches.”

The 27-year-old – who is seeded second in Mallorca – will face Adrian Mannarino in the second round of the grass court tournament today.

Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.