Alex made a blistering start to 2019 winning his first ATP tour title in his home town of Sydney. He backed up this title with two more at Atlanta and Zhuhai. Other highlights were making finals in Basel and NextGen final in Milan. However, he suffered a five-match losing streak leading into Roland Garros which prohibited him from achieving a higher ranking in 2019.
At 20 years of age de Minaur is gaining momentum and will be in the mix for a top 30 spot again in 2020.
My thoughts on de Minaur are fast, diligent, Hewitt-less-mess and respectful.
Fast: Demon is lightning quick and possibly the speediest player on tour. No drop shot or ball hit away from him is safe.
Diligent: de Minaur seems to be very hardworking and well prepared and leaves no stone unturned when it comes to fighting for a match win.
Hewitt-less-mess: This is my term for his never say die attitude on court and willingness to fight for every point no matter the circumstances. This trait and his game style combine to have him often compared to Hewitt. However, I append with less-mess to indicate he does not have the anger trait that Hewitt possessed.
Respectful: Genuinely seems to respect the game and the players etc. who have come before him. He loves to play for Australia and continue on the tradition of Australian team tennis.
Likes: I enjoy seeing him chasing down a well-executed drop shot or racing across the court to hit a forehand winner on the run. Sometimes launches himself airborne to smack a forehand winner.
Dislikes: With his game style, he doesn’t attack enough preferring to counter punch and wait for opponent errors. He does possess a good volley so could initiate coming forward more offensively rather than just opportunistically coming to the net.
Areas for improvement: Although de Minaur has a decent forehand and backhand, they are not well-rounded. The forehand cross is error-prone, and he wins too few points using the inside-out forehand. Alex can also sit back and wait too much and risk getting bossed by an opponent (As evidenced in the Milan final against Sinner and Federer in Basel). He needs to keep working on improving his serve as he doesn’t get enough free points with it. His homework is definitely to seek out the master of all the all-court game on YouTube.