#2 Dominic Thiem vs. # 5 Alexander Zverev
Tale of the Tape
Serve – Zverev has the bigger serve but has struggled with nerves and double faults – No Edge/Slight Edge Zverev depending on Zverev’s nerves
Return – Thiem’s big swings are not ideal on a hard court, but I think he has a slight advantage – Slight Edge to Thiem
Forehand – Advantage Thiem Period.
Backahnd – Slight Advantage Thiem
Net Play – Neither guy makes their living at the net. Zverev is harder to lob so slight but negligible edge
Mentality – Dominic Thiem has a huge edge here. He has gotten closer to winning in each of his three previous major finals. He overcame a bad CincNY performance and has won 6 matches in succession to reach his second major final of the year. Zverev has looked extremely nervous in each of his two most recent matches. Does facing the #2 seed loosen him up? Does playing a friend loosen him up? Does playing with house money loosen him up? If not, Thiem may steamroll him because Thiem is a much better player than either of Zverev’s two most recent opponents.
Experience – See above. Thiem seems ready. Maybe Zverev grows into the moment a la Sampras in 1990 or Rafter in 1997 or Safin in 2000 or Hewitt in 2001 of JMDP in 2009, but to this point he has looked a little out of his element being so close to major hardware. To his credit he has rallied from early deficits. Thiem is not likely to let Zverev do that again.
My Prediction – Dominic Thiem will win this match unless Zverev serves big and makes the surface speed a major factor. I am taking Dominic Thiem to win 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (3)