Roger Federer was bullied by Dominic Thiem in ATP Finals defeat says Tim Henman

Roger Federer was bullied by Dominic Thiem from the baseline in his ATP Finals defeat on Sunday.

That is the view of former British No 1 Tim Henman.

Federer started the match with a 2-4 head-to-head record against Thiem and made a poor start as he was broken in his opening service game.

The Swiss did hit back to level the set but then serving at 5-5, he was broken again and Thiem held his serve to take the set 7-5.

The second set then went with serve until Federer was broken again at 5-5 and despite getting break back chances, he failed to capitalise on them and the Austrian went on to complete a straight-sets win.

It now means Federer is on the back foot and needs to beat Matteo Berrettini and Novak Djokovic to have a chance of reaching the semi-finals.

But speaking on the BBC’s coverage of the event, Henman was impressed with how Thiem was able to dominate Federer.

He said: “From the back of the court it was really Thiem’s aggressive play, how he was almost able to bully Federer and that’s unusual on any tennis court, let alone on an indoor court.

“But when they got into baseline exchanges it was invariably Thiem that came out on top.

“They’ve played six times before and Thiem was up 4-2, he’s added to that and he will be delighted by his start to the event.”

In his post-match press conference, Thiem spoke about the honour he felt from beating Federer.

“To beat him, everything has to fit together. Today I think was the case again. I played very well,” he said.

“I played a good match in general. Serving, returning well, which is probably the two most important things indoor.”

“Then probably also the last game was crucial. I don’t even want to think about what happens if he makes that game and comes back to a tiebreak, so I’m very happy that I pulled that through at 6-5.

“In general, it’s a very nice victory for me. I mean, every time only playing against him is a big honour.

“Beating him is even better, and especially on this surface indoor where he’s feeling well usually.”

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