VIENNA, October 21, 2019
Dominic Thiem, top seed of the Erste Bank Open in Vienna, will open his title bid on Tuesday against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. The 26-year-old Austrian is seeking his first match win against the Frenchman in the pair’s third tour meeting.
Question: Are you ready for tomorrow?
Dominic Thiem: I had a very good week. Last Wednesday I played for the first time inside the Stadthalle followed by some more good practice sessions. Now I’m ready for the match against Tsonga.
How do you prepare for this match?
I have not played against him for a long time. The last time was 2016 in Indian Wells. We’ll talk about it in the team and I’ll watch a few videos from Metz where he won the tournament. His great strengths will not have changed much: he has a strong serve and then puts pressure on his opponent with his forehand.
What’s your opinion about the Court inside the Stadthalle?
The court is great. Of course, it has changed a little since the first day of practice. The surface has become a bit smoother, but it is a fair court for everyone – not too slow, not too fast and therefore quite identical compared to recent years.
What are your memories of the tournament last year?
The tournament last year was really good for me as well. Kei Nishikori played very well in the quarter-final winning against me. Last year was certainly my best tournament here in Vienna. Every year I get more experienced. When the match starts tomorrow, I have to be at 100 per cent. I managed to focus very well during the Kitzbühel tournament earlier this season.
How will your schedule look like until the match?
I will have another practice session on Center Court tomorrow. Warming-up for the match is very important. Otherwise everything is just like at any other tournament. I will have something to eat two or three hours before the match and then it starts.
What do you think about Vienna in autumn?
Vienna, together with London, certainly has the highest status for me. Kitzbühel and Vienna are of course very special. These are usually the only two weeks of the year when I have the chance to play at home. It will be a big disappointment if things do not go well here. But of course that can happen and I do not want to put too much pressure on myself.