Mens Tennis Forums banner

1 - 20 of 85 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,782 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I know all Djokovic fans have already started celebrating the US Open victory and #18 for Djokovic,

But Thiem is primed as well to be successful at the US Open. Nadal is out , Fed and a lot of other will be out. He is in prime form at the moment and has been on the brink for a year or two and will be hungry at the US Open.

So tactically how does he need to beat Djokovic? For example does he need to hug the baseline and attack the forehand or does he need to paint the lines like Wawrinka to even have a chance. Should he adopt a longer rally strategy or play all court tennis, rushing the net every once and a while.

Of course there will be plenty of people to knock these two out before they can even meet each other.... but this matchup seems the most likely for the Final.

Djokovic, Thiem and tennis fans in general , give your analysis.
 
  • Like
Reactions: paca

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,089 Posts
I know all Djokovic fans have already started celebrating the US Open victory and #18 for Djokovic,

But Thiem is primed as well to be successful at the US Open. Nadal is out , Fed and a lot of other will be out. He is in prime form at the moment and has been on the brink for a year or two and will be hungry at the US Open.

So tactically how does he need to beat Djokovic? For example does he need to hug the baseline and attack the forehand or does he need to paint the lines like Wawrinka to even have a chance. Should he adopt a longer rally strategy or play all court tennis, rushing the net every once and a while.

Of course there will be plenty of people to knock these two out before they can even meet each other.... but this matchup seems the most likely for the Final.

Djokovic, Thiem and tennis fans in general , give your analysis.
Wrong, not all.

Of course can Thiem it, without a doubt. He has everything.

And you are right. This match-up is the most likely for the final. Dark Horses are Tsitsipas and Medvedev who could spoil the party with Zverev in the front graden.

Serve like crazy, paint the lines only as a finisher or closer, not brainless randomly or too early. Mix it up, few slices, hang in the rallyes if you have stamina and do not provide angles, play ugly shots. When you are serving, constant pressure, come forward to finish him off.
When recieving: Patience, take your time, not too risky. Get into a rallye, let him produce ideas and errors and counter punch / pass him at the right moment when not expected.
 

·
Your visions will happen
Joined
·
50,129 Posts
Of course we all know Djokovic historically has not done as well at USO as AO. The surface, sure, and the diversity of contenders is always a factor

For Thiem he needs to make sure he gets to the final without a series of 4-5 hour matches like in AO where he seemed to run out by early in the 5th vs Nole

A lot depends on the draw, a lot depends on who gets infected and has to withdraw, and so on. So every day, every match is very important, take nothing for granted
 

·
justice for all
Joined
·
16,880 Posts
Dominic needs to come fresher to the final. That should be enough. It the last two slam finals he was really exhausted. In the AO it cost him a win. If they come on even turns he’ll roast the Serb this time. But of course it’s a long way and he needs to win 6 previous matches first which is an extremely difficult task. Let’s take it match by match. There’s no guarantee any of the two will be in the final.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,274 Posts
A player with zero slams, one masters, and a 1-6 record in big finals isn't a lock for any title. He has a much better chance of losing in the first week than he does of making a final, anyway. Maybe he'll lose in the first round like last year.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,457 Posts
Novak Djokovic reaching the final.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
63 Posts
Assuming they're both in the final and neither player nor the tournament is compromised (big "ifs", but to align with the spirit of the OP's discussion), Thiem's serve, return of serve, and his one handed backhand will be the most critical factors against Djokovic. You know what you're going to get from Novak, and that will require some beating.

Much like the Stanimal, Thiem's groundstrokes have the power and consistency to trade with and impose on the Djoker. Djokovic's rally ball seems to suit Wawrinka's one handed backhand and Stan is honestly just more dangerous and consistent with that groundstroke than Thiem, so Thiem's backhand will need variety (checks that box with the slice to change pace/junk the rally as well as to defend/recover) and he will need the backhand down the line to be more reliable than it was in Melbourne.

Thiem reached his first hardcourt grand slam final largely due to his markedly improved return of serve and this is another result of working with Massu as well as Dominic's natural evolution into becoming more consistent on all surfaces. He's forcing himself closer to the baseline for first serve returns and then giving himself the option of remaining or giving himself more time (the "Nadal method" ;)) on second serve returns. I also like that Thiem is practicing and implementing shorter, more compact swings on return and giving his opponents a different look, forcing them to react faster. He's not and will never be a better returner than Djokovic, but being a greater threat in return games exhausts your opponents' mental energy and has given Thiem more general confidence in pressure/tighter moments, especially against the Big 3.

Thiem's serve reminds me alot of how I viewed Andy Murray's serve: Nothing wrong with the first serve, but could use a little more variety on the second serve (Murray's preference was the slice, whereas Dominic has the kick, but also a little more general, added pace on his second compared to Murray). Dominic's serving complements and sets up his attacking options very well, so my focus would be on his first serve percentage (must be over 60% and closer to 65% is preferred, small margins in tennis) and percentage of second serve points won (must be over 50% and again closer to 55% is preferred). Djokovic is the best returner the game has ever seen (sorry Andre, but it's true), so you're just trying to constrain his most significant advantage.

Thiem has the game, mental fortitude, and the past triumphs/scars to do the job. Period. But I don't envy the task of solving Djokovic.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,147 Posts
so Thiem's backhand will need variety (checks that box with the slice to change pace/junk the rally as well as to defend/recover) and he will need the backhand down the line to be more reliable than it was in Melbourne.
Also, he needs to abandon the big DTL winner on the BH wing if it's not working. By a time a player reaches the final, they're tired, and that's the type of high-accuracy, low-margin-of-error shot that can go walkabout. If that happens, he needs to ditch it and just duke it out with Djokovic, trading cross courts and big hits down the middle until Djokovic tires and falters. Because yes, it's not 2015/16 Djokovic: he does falter if you put him under pressure. Even Fed wins a lot of the long rallies against him nowadays.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,274 Posts
Because yes, it's not 2015/16 Djokovic: he does falter if you put him under pressure. Even Fed wins a lot of the long rallies against him nowadays.
Interesting. Novak won five of the last sevens slams...just slightly worse than 2015/2016, when he won five of six. He also won 80% of his matches against Federer since returning from his elbow surgery. :)
 
1 - 20 of 85 Posts
Top