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Watch: Thiem cracks up at cheeky dig by Generali Open’s winning opponent | Tennis News

Dominic Thiem wasn’t just the overwhelming favourite for the Kitzbühel crowd owing to being the local boy, he had the emotional backing of tennis world as the Austrian star had reached his first tour-level final since the 2020 Nitto ATP Finals. And while on his favourite surface, where he reached two Grand Slam finals in Roland Garros, he was expected to outlast Sebastian Baez in the Generali Open final on Sunday. But the Argentine crashed the party of the home favourite as he scripted a stunning straight-set win.

Dominic Thiem's title drought continued since 2020 US Open win
Dominic Thiem’s title drought continued since 2020 US Open win

Baez did not allow an inch of opportunity of any sort in the summit clash as he produced a flawless show to outperform the 2019 winner, scripting a 6-3, 6-1 win. The youngster raced away to a 4-1 lead in the opening set before winning another streak of four games in the second set to wrap up the match in just 80 minutes.

After the match, Baez apologised to the Kitzbühel crowd in his on-court interview for not allowing Thiem to win the trophy.

“I know all the people wanted Domi to win because he is from here, sorry,” said the Argentine who claimed his third ATP title win, all of which came at clay-court ATP 250s. “I’m happy not just for today, but the whole week. All the people, the crowd, made me feel so comfortable here this week. I know this weather is not the best, but this place is amazing, and I enjoyed every day. I’m happy to take the match. Congrats to Domi and his team. It was a great week [for them], so I hope he comes back to his best level.”

Baez then took a cheeky dig at Thiem, drawing laughter from the Austrian star who is yet to win an ATP title since his historic US Open trophy haul in 2020.

“Thank you Domi, for sharing the court. You’re a great player. Many years ago I saw you on TV & you motivated me to be here. I hope you play better than this week,” said the 22-year-old as the crowd burst into laughter and so did Thiem before giving a thumbs up. “Because you deserve more, of course!”

Despite the loss, Thiem will return to top 100 in the ATP rankings come Monday. He will be ranked 89 now as he shifts focus on preparations for the US Open.

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