© Simon Owen/Wonderhatch

Season Portrait: Dominic Thiem

Austrian became the first player born in 1990s to win a major

Over the course of eight days, ATPTour.com is serving up a season snapshot of the eight players who qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals. The series is illustrated by intimate portraits shot by British photographer Simon Owen. Yesterday, we looked at Daniil Medvedev's year. Today, we examine Dominic Thiem's season.

Memorable Moment
In a nerve-wracking US Open final in which Thiem was so tense that he was physically unable to uncork his blistering backhand, the Austrian willed himself to victory against Alexander Zverev in a fifth-set tie-break to claim his first Grand Slam title. Thiem became the first men’s Grand Slam champion born in the 1990s and the first player in more than 16 years to rally from two sets down in a major final.

Key Stat
With his epic two-hour, 54-minute semi-final victory over Novak Djokovic in the Nitto ATP Finals semi-finals, Thiem became the second man after Andy Murray to collect five or more wins against each member of the Big Three: Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. Thiem’s record against the Big Three over the past two years is an astonishing 9-3.

“I hope [winning the US Open] doesn’t change my life because my life cannot depend on success. That would be wrong. But I hope it definitely changes my career.”

The Road Ahead
In 2021, Thiem will fight to become the first player outside the Big Four (Djokovic, Nadal, Federer, Murray) to break into the Top 2 of the FedEx ATP Rankings in more than 15 years.

Photo: Simon Owen/Wonderhatch

More stories like this in: