Novak Djokovic has ‘a superb aura’, according to Dominic Thiem, who says it is immediately noticeable when you play him for the first time.
Thiem is now a top player himself, and a Grand Slam champion having won the US Open this year.
However, when he first played the Serbian star, he was almost overwhelmed by Djokovic’s presence alone.
“I played against him for the first time in Shanghai in 2014. He was on a peak,” Thiem wrote on his official website.
“A few days before he had destroyed Tomas Berdych in the Beijing final. I just hoped he wouldn’t crush me.
“I had immediately noticed the aura of his superb level of play, however, I managed to wriggle out quite well.
“I was able to keep up solidly, though I lost 3-6, 4-6. That was far away from a disaster.
“In 2018, in the semi-final in Rome, I played against him quite badly, lost 0-6, 1-6.
“But three weeks later I defeated him in the Paris quarterfinals in three sets. My first win [against him]! Amazing!
“My first victory was quite emotional. Two additional highlights: I won the 2019 Roland Garros semi-final. In the same year won the group match at the Masters.”
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