Dominic Thiem recovered from two sets down to win his first-ever US Open singles title as he defeated Alexander Zverev of Germany in a thrilling five-set match 2-6 4-6 6-4 6-3 7-6 (8-6).
Second seed Thiem was appearing in his fourth major final, while this was the first major final for the fifth seed Zverev.
Thiem lost the first two sets 2-6, 4-6 and it appeared to be all over for the Austrian but he made a spectacular comeback into the game and won the next two sets 6-4, 6-3. The fifth set went into a tie-breaker after Thiem squandered his advantage.
The final was being played behind closed doors on Arthur Ashe Stadium at Flushing Meadows, New York due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking at the presentation ceremony, Zverev broke down and kept stopping his speech as he struggled to complete his sentences. He said, “I don’t know where to start. I’d like to congratulate Dominic on the first of many Grand Slam titles. It was a tough battle – I wish you would have missed a little more.”
He continued, “Here I am giving a runner-up speech. Thanks to my team for sticking with me – the last two years have not been easy – hopefully, one day we will lift this trophy.”
Unable to continue his speech, The US Open finalist said with choked voice, “I want to thank my parents. I wish one day I can bring the trophy home.”
Thiem, for his part, consoled his opponent by saying that he would one day indeed make his parents proud by winning the US Open.
Thiem said, “I’d also like to start with you, Sascha. We started to know each other in 2014 when we were both ranked 100th or something and straight away we developed a great friendship.
“Then in 2016, I think, our great rivalry started again and we made great things happen on and off the court… It is amazing how far our journey brought us. I wish we could have two winners today, we both deserve it.”
This was just the fifth Grand Slam final in the Open Era won by a player who was two sets down.
Just the fifth Grand Slam final in the Open Era won by a player who was two sets down.
1974 French Open Borg d Orantes
1984 French Open, Lendl d McEnroe
1999 French Open, Agassi d Medvedev
2004 French Open, Gaudio d Coria
2020 US Open, @ThiemDomi d. Zverev
— ATP Tour (@atptour) September 14, 2020
Earlier, Naomi Osaka had recovered from being a set down to win her second US Open singles title when she defeated Victoria Azarenka.
This year’s US Open had its own share of twists as the top seed Novak Djokovic was disqualified after he accidentally hit a line judge with the tennis ball.