Thiem ready to attack Rafa in US Open quarters
Dominic Thiem plans to adopt an aggressive approach when he faces Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals of the US Open.
Ninth seed Thiem recorded a hugely impressive straight-sets win over Kevin Anderson, last year's runner-up at Flushing Meadows, on Sunday to secure a last-eight meeting with the defending champion.
All 10 of Thiem's previous matches with Nadal have taken place on clay, including June's French Open final that the Spaniard won in straight sets.
Asked what had been key to his three career successes against Nadal, Thiem replied: "That I was really aggressive."
He added: "I think that I have very powerful groundstrokes, and I can even hurt him with them. But the key is to play really fast and powerful. But at the same time, not make too many mistakes.
"I did it sometimes against him [in the past], but it's a risky game style also, because it can happen that I make too many mistakes and then it looks black.
"I'm really looking forward to playing him on a hard court for the first time. On clay, I think it's one of the biggest challenges in sports to beat this guy or to compete with this guy. I hope that it's a little bit more comfortable on hard court, but I'm not sure.
"To compete with him well, I always have to have a great day, and I have to play well. But I did today, so I just keep up my habits."
Thiem, who will turn 25 on Monday, highlighted the vast size of the court on Louis Armstrong Stadium as a significant aid as he got the better of Anderson.
"The court, I think, made a big difference," he said. "It's a huge court. I could go very far back [for returns], like I do on clay usually.
"I played him three years ago on Court 17, which didn't allow me to go that far back.
"It helped me a lot. I also did the same in Madrid [when Thiem beat Anderson for the first time earlier this year]. It worked out, so I thought why not on a hard court? It worked.
"Against him, the most important [thing] is to put as many balls back into play as possible."