Highlights Benoit Paire vs Dominic Thiem | Australian Open 2019
Thiem and Paire will be going head-to-head for the second time in their careers and for the second time at the Australian Open when clash during first-round action on Tuesday. Their only previous meeting came in the third round of the 2017 Melbourne festivities, with Thiem getting the job done 6-1, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4. That ended up being a decent tournament for the eighth-ranked Austrian, who made a real run at a hard-court major for the first time when he advanced to the 2018 U.S. Open quarterfinals–beating Kevin Anderson in the process before succumbing to Rafael Nadal in a five-set thriller. Still, the jury remains out on Thiem’s hard-court form and he is coming off a season-opening loss to Pierre-Hugues Herbert in Doha.
Paire took the court in each of the first two weeks, turning in a quarterfinal performance in Pune (fell to Gilles Simon) before exiting right away in Auckland (got crushed by eventual runner-up Cameron Norrie). Although the 61st-ranked Frenchman’s natural talent makes him dangerous on any given day, he really hasn’t produced a single notable result since upsetting Novak Djokovic–then a shadow of his former and current self–in the Miami second round last spring. Thiem probably won’t be convincing, but his consistent attack of the Paire forehand will eventually be enough to prevail.