French Open

Thiem forced into early retirement after injuries

Thiem forced into early retirement after injuries

Dominic Thiem has won one Grand Slam title and 17 ATP events during his career [Getty Images]

Former US Open champion Dominic Thiem says he will retire later this year because of the wrist injury which derailed his career.

The 30-year-old Austrian reached four Grand Slam finals before the wrist problem forced him off the ATP Tour.

Thiem hopes to finish his career at a home event in Vienna in October.

"It is a very important, very sad, very beautiful message that this season will be my last one," Thiem said.

"There are some reasons behind it: firstly, of course, my wrist. It is not exactly the way it should be and how I want it.

"The second reason is my inner feeling: I have been thinking about this decision for a very long time."

Thiem won his only Grand Slam title at the 2020 US Open, lifting him to a career-high ranking of third in the world.

He had previously finished runner-up at the 2018 and 2019 French Opens and the 2020 Australian Open.

Less than a year after his New York triumph, Thiem suffered a wrist injury which kept him off the ATP Tour for 10 months and resulted in his ranking plummeting to outside the top 350.

Thiem returned to the top 100 last year, but has been unable to regain the form and consistency which marked him out as one of the leading players in the sport.

In March he said he had a minor recurrence of the wrist injury but returned last month to play events in Estoril, Monte Carlo, Munich and Madrid.

"I've had success and trophies which I never dreamt of. It was an incredible journey," Thiem said.

"In the end I came to the conclusion that this decision to end my career at the end of this season is the only right one."

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Wrist injury robbed Thiem of his peak years – analysis

Fighting back from two sets down to beat Alexander Zverev in the 2020 US Open final ensured Thiem will be forever remembered as a Grand Slam champion.

But, as one of the most explosive and energetic players of his generation prematurely calls it day, the feeling is that he could have achieved so much more.

When Thiem lost to Rafael Nadal for the second year running in the French Open final, it felt inevitable he would get his hands on the Coupe des Mousquetaires one day.

Five years later, Thiem has not won the major trophy which many thought he was destined to do – or any others.

The style which led to Thiem's success – raw power generated through the wrist on both his forehand and one-handed backhand – took its toll.

Wrist injuries are notoriously difficult for tennis players to overcome and this one has robbed Thiem of what should have been his peak years. The same thing happened with another US Open champion in Juan Martin del Potro.

Yet Thiem shows no bitterness and says he is "super excited" to see what the future brings.

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