Dominic Thiem has reassured fans that he is not suffering from depression and he simply needs time to recover from a challenging year.
Thiem won the US Open in September to achieve a career-long pursuit of a major ambition: becoming a Grand Slam champion.
He has, understandably, suffered a dip in form from there, disappointing at the Australian Open and losing early in both Doha and Dubai.
However, he says what he is going through is natural given all the effort he has committed to tennis to achieve his Grand Slam dream, and all he needs is some time.
"I can only say that there is no depression at play," Dominic Thiem told ORF.
"But of course, as a tennis player, or as an athlete, or even as a normal person, you often reach your limits.
"And when you exceed them a little bit, or when you celebrate such a great success that you've been working towards for so long, of course it does something to you.
"So it's just obvious that your life is different than it was before.
"And I probably nibbled away at energy reserves that I didn't even know I had.
"Of course both the body and the head need time to recover from that. It's normal that there might be a small hole after such a high."
"But in a sport where there are tournaments week after week, where the level is so high, it probably has an extremely strong effect, and obviously you can't hide it from the public eye."
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