Thiem: ‘I Knew That It Was Going To Take Time'
The Austrian has yet to win a match since he returned to the ATP Tour in April, having missed nine months due to a wrist injury.
“I knew that it was going to take time, that the level is extremely high from all the players competing here and I'm not there yet,” Thiem said in his post-match press conference. “I was really working hard to get there but the time was just not enough.
“I have to accept it and even though it was [a] really painful defeat now, week after week, it's still nothing unexpected happened. If I would have won many matches or whatever, would have been a big surprise. So it's painful, I'm very disappointed, but it goes on.”
While there have been encouraging signs for the former World No. 3 in matches, he has now lost all seven encounters he has played across all levels in 2022, with his last win coming a year ago in Rome.
Thiem revealed that he is feeling physically and mentally fine, but is suffering from nerves on court, partly due to the lack of match practice.
“Zero physical issues," Thiem said. "I also have no mental problems with the forehand, I'm not scared or anything, but the problem is that, practise was really decent already with the forehand but then [the] match situation is something different.
“I'm obviously a little bit more tight, more nervous and obviously the whole body gets more tight, gets more nervous and right now that's toxic to my forehand because I'm still missing the fine feeling there, I'm missing it a lot.”
The 28-year-old has won 17 tour-level titles in his career, including one ATP Masters 1000 title and one Grand Slam crown. When Thiem was asked about whether he has changed training methods in recent weeks, he said that he feels it is best to continue with what worked for him in the past.
“I'm not doing anything different in training. I think that's the key,” Thiem added. “Because with [a] certain way of training I got very successful, so it's time to do the same again to get back on track. I mean it's no secret that I started to practise really well and really consistent, I don't know, six or seven weeks ago and it's just not enough time, especially for the injury I had.
“The key is just to be patient, continue being patient, work on the stuff which is not working and then it will come back, but it will take time. I cannot say now I'm disappointed, I'll work hard for a week and then next tournament I'm playing super well. I have to be patient and I think it's going to take a few more months until I can really say, okay, now I'm ready to beat those top guys again.”