Austria’s Dominic Thiem battled back from a set down to beat Alex Zverev 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(3), 7-6(4) on Friday to book his spot in the Australian Open final, and into a matchup with Novak Djokovic.
“It was an unreal match, two tie-breaks, so tough and so close,” said Thiem. “It was almost impossible to break him, such a high percentage of first serves.
An Australian Open final is unreal, and what a start to the season so far.”
A couple of days removed from battling past Rafael Nadal in a quarterfinal match that lasted more than four hours, Thiem needed three hours and 42 minutes to defeat Zverev in the semifinals. The fifth-seeded Austrian blasted 43 winners and saved nine break points, and now gets ready to square off against the seven-time champion Djokovic.
“I have been twice in the Roland Garros final, twice facing Rafa, and now I am facing Djokovic, he is the ‘King of Australia’, winning seven titles here,” said Thiem. “I will try my best and do everything I can to win. But if I walk off the court in two days’ time a loser, I will be patient and trust the process and continue to work hard.”
Djokovic is 6-4 all-time against Thiem. The two will square off for the 11th time on Sunday at 3:30 a.m. EST.