Italy's Marco Cecchinato says he wants to target a spot among the world's top 20 players after his remarkable run at the French Open. However, Thiem won the last meeting between the two defeating Nadal in the quarterfinals in Madrid a year ago.
Nadal beat the Austrian 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 in a match the he dominated from the very start.
He is the first Italian to reach the semi-finals of a Grand Slam in 40 years.
"I had a tough moment in the third set with cramps in my hand".
Can you see Thiem denying Nadal a record-extending 11th title at Roland Garros? The last Grand Slam tournament he played was at Wimbledon a year ago, where he was knocked out by Kei Nishikori of Japan.
Seemingly cruising to victory, that's when Nadal called for the trainer.
The Austrian is never one to hide his frustration, but then the sheer relentlessness of Nadal on clay would wear anyone down.
Play has since resumed and Nadal now leads 4-2 in the third set. And what are the four other finest tie-breaks that the men's game has produced? Its neck-in-neck in the first game. Midway through the opening set, Nadal's aqua T-shirt was so soaked with sweat it stuck to him, so he changed into a fresh one at a changeover, drawing catcalls from spectators.
In the 13 editions that went by, Nadal won 10. She said Thiem must make the first move before Nadal settles in and he should also hope the weather is by his side on Philippe Chatrier. But after, the Spaniard was imperious.
He has not been broken since.
Thiem is contesting his first Grand Slam final.
In a topsy-turvy afternoon on Court Suzanne Lenglen, Djokovic raced through the third set in just 27 minutes before requiring further medical attention, this time for a right leg injury.
If Thiem's going to be able to overcome Nadal, beating the backhand is vital.
Thiem, who has won two clay-court tournaments this season in Argentina and Lyon, is now into his first Grand Slam final.
Suffered his first French Open loss in 2009 to Sweden's Robin Soderling in the fourth round. The only reason it does not rank even higher in this list is that it was punctuated by several extraordinary errors by Djokovic, culminating in a shanked set-point that would have taken the match into a fifth set.
The crowd cheered when Zidane was shown on the big screen. On Friday Djokovic-slayer is all set to take on Austria's Dominic Thiem for a spot in the final on Sunday.
Nadal got off to the flawless start, breaking Thiem easily for a 2-0 lead but the Austrian quickly responded to level proceedings.
Two breaks later Nadal was in a familiar position, serving for the title, and when another Thiem forehand dropped long, his arms were raised in celebration, yet again.
He admitted he was also close to quitting at 1-5 down in the second set.
With the two heavy favourites in the semi-finals winning, we have the final that most people during the latter stages would have wanted, Nadal v Thiem, and before I discuss the data in detail, I wanted to talk about their previous meetings a little more. He played a great two weeks.
The No. 6-seeded pairing from the Czech Republic beat Eri Hozumi and Makoto Ninomiya of Japan 6-3, 6-3 on Sunday.
His lead was reminiscent of their semifinal at the French Open a year ago, when Nadal also held the early advantage.
In contrast, there are eight women now younger than 28 who have been Grand Slam singles finalists.
They knocked out the top-seeded pair of Timea Babos and Kristina Mladenovic in the quarterfinals.
And in 2012, he surpassed Borg's record to become the most successful player in French Open history with his seventh crown.
Nadal. the world's No. 1 player, has 17 career Grand Slam titles, now three behind Roger Federer for most all-time. Only Thiem's 2016 victory over Nadal in Buenos Aires was a success on non-quick clay.
The forecast says there is a chance of rain.