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Dominic Thiem Claims Returning John Isner’s Server Is a “50/50 Chance”

Dominic Thiem reached the semi-finals of the 2021 Madrid Open which was a surprise for the Austrian professional.

Dominic Thiem defeated John Isner of the USA to reach the semi-finals of the Mutua Madrid Open. Later the Austrian maestro said to return the American’s serve is a ’50/50 chance’.

The World No. 4 faced Alex De Minaur in the previous round at the ATP 1000 circuit and won the match with a score of 7 (9)-6 (7), 6-4. However, Thiem’s challenge was the quarter-finals against World No. 39.

The American is known for his strong serves and most of his serves can get him an ace. Therefore, the Austrian was very cautious about his opponent’s serves. Thiem even compared Isner’s serves to penalty kick-out session and claimed returning those shorts is a game of luck.

In the post-match interview, Thiem exerted his views on Isner’s serves, “I think it’s comparable to a goalkeeper [facing] a penalty. If he places it well, if it has the right speed, there’s just no time to react.”

John Isner served 18 aces against Dominic Thiem in the quarter-finals of the 2021 Madrid Open.

John Isner served 18 aces against Dominic Thiem in the quarter-finals of the 2021 Madrid Open.

“You either have to guess or hope that he’s missing the first serve. It’s just pure luck actually to return it. It’s like a 50/50 chance. That’s why it’s so, so tough,” the Austrian further added.

The American forced World No. 4 to a corner at the first set and ended up winning that set. However, Thiem started adapting to Isner’s servers with each passing second of the game.

In the second set, the 27-year-old Austrian made a comeback against Isner and soon turned the table in the match. Thiem claimed victory in the next two sets, resulting in him winning the match against the World No. 39 with a score of 3-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Dominic Thiem overcame the big-hitter John Isner to reach the semi-finals of the 2021 Madrid Open.

Dominic Thiem overcame the big-hitter John Isner to reach the semi-finals of the 2021 Madrid Open.

The American struck 18 aces in the quarter-finals, whereas Dominic could only strike two aces throughout the match. Further, the clay courts are not Isner’s favorite but he got a nice ring to the Madrid court.

After the R16 match, the 36-year-old American expressed his thought about the court, “It’s perfect serving conditions out here, especially on this court. It’s got a nice sound, kind of like an indoor court. I can’t ask for anything better.”

Dominic Thiem will face the German professional Alexander Zverev in the semi-finals of the 1000 circuit. Further, the German defeated the ‘King of Clay’ Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals with a straight score of 6-4, 6-4.

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