ChabDog’s Aussie Open Conversation Openers (Preview, Men’s Finals):
— ChabDog is an official card-carrying member of the Domi dream team, hoping and praying Thiem can continue his recent run of success over no-nonsense Novak. Thiem has won the last two meetings, though he trails the World No. 2 6-4 in the overall tally.
— How and why can Dominic do it? He just got through the gauntlet of nasty Nadal, and has certainly shown he has the firepower off the ground to cause Djoker some heartburn. He has the best single shot off the ground … an atomic, one-handed backhand, along with a forehand that is less reliable, but also quite potent. As for the serve, that’s improved, and he’s in tip top physical shape.
— The biggest question is whether he can hold up mentally over the course of what will likely be a 4 or 5 set fight to the death against his more experienced opponent. Novak won’t beat himself, and won’t likely break down due to injury or fatigue, so the Austrian will have to pressure him, move him around the court and generally harass him into error and leaving openings for winners. That will most certainly be a mental marathon, and few players are up for that challenge.
— This is Thiem’s 3 grand slam final, and perhaps his time has finally come. Novak’s strategy, as always, will be one of cruel attrition; for Dom it’s a cinch… just keep moving, keep going for your shot and keep avoiding the clinch…
— Thiem in 5….