Dominic Thiem of Austria (pictured) holds up the U.S. Open Championship Trophy after beating Alexander Zverev of Germany in the men's final Sunday at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York. Photo by Justin Lane/EPA-EFE

Dominic Thiem rallies from two sets down to win first major title at U.S. Open


Sept. 13 (UPI) -- After dropping the first two sets to Alexander Zverev on Sunday at Arthur Ashe Stadium, Dominic Thiem constructed a historic comeback to win his first major championship at the 2020 U.S. Open.

The second-seeded Thiem rallied for a 2-6, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 7-6 (6) victory over Zverev in a match that spanned more than four hours. The match was decided by a fifth-set tiebreaker -- something that had never occurred in the final at Flushing Meadows.

The 27-year-old Austrian becomes the first man to win the U.S. Open after trailing 2-0 in the final since Pancho Gonzalez did it against Ted Schroeder in 1949, when the event was known as the U.S. Championships.

"I want to congratulate Dominic on the first of many Grand Slam titles. ... It was a tough battle," the fifth-seeded Zverev said. "I wish you would have missed a little bit more so I could have [held] that trophy up, but here I am giving the runner-up's speech."

Thiem entered this year's final with a 0-3 record in Grand Slam finals, with losses against Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. This time, with Roger Federer, Nadal and Djokovic out of the championship match, Thiem was the favorite and emerged with his first Grand Slam trophy.

On Saturday, No. 4 seed Naomi Osaka beat unseeded Victoria Azarenka in the U.S. Open women's final. Osaka dropped the opening set but rallied for a 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 win to claim her second U.S. Open title.