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Thiem Does Not Plan to Decrease Playing Commitments in 2017
Posted on November 18, 2016 at 5:00 PM
82 matches wore him down in 2017, but Dominic Thiem is not sure he’ll schedule any differently in 2017.
Dominic Thiem had a breakout season in 2016, reaching his first Grand Slam semifinal at Roland Garros and climbing into the Top 10, but some of the enthusiasm about Thiem’s rise was tempered by a very dodgy finish that saw him drop 12 of his final 24 matches and regularly wear the extreme fatigue of the tour’s season-long grind.
But Thiem soldiered on, even when many pundits wondered why he wouldn’t take his foot of the gas and give himself a much-needed rest. Thiem retired from two matches after Wimbledon, including at the U.S. Open where he had to pull out against Juan Martin del Potro in the round of 16. But he continued to play after the year’s final major, competing in six events and eventually locking up his London bid.
Was it worth it, or would Thiem have been better served to take a long block for rehabilitation at some point along the way? Will the Austrian consider doing something like that 2017, now that he’s learned how tough it is to survive when one is playing deep into draws almost every week?
Thiem finishes season 58-24 after holding 46-12 record prior to Wimbledon. Still an awesome season but rough finish.
— Chris Oddo (@TheFanChild) November 18, 2016
It doesn’t appear that he is too concerned about it.
“If I would have played less, I wouldn’t be here at the Finals,” Thiem said on Tuesday. “This was one of the reasons why I’m here, because I was playing a lot.” Thiem added: “Maybe I will play a little less, but also maybe not. I think also the body and the mind and everything gets used to it. It was my first year that I played over 80 matches. Of course, I drop a little bit. I think it’s really normal. I think that if I play the same amount of matches and tournaments next year, I will be used to it much better than this year.”
At 23, Thiem is considered one of the rising forces in tennis. He’ll surely benefit from all the experience he’s getting—particularly on grass and hardcourts, which aren’t his best surfaces, but at some point he’ll need to fine tune his periodization and preparation skills so that he may approach the biggest events in his best physical form. That did not appear to be the case at Wimbledon, the U.S. Open or these World Tour Finals.