Wednesday, 20 February, 2019

Grigor Dimitrov Is Doing His Best Roger Federer Impression

Thiem is hoping to right the ship in London Thiem is hoping to right the ship in London
Kristopher Love | 14 November, 2017, 11:05

The sixth-ranked Dimitrov maintained his focus despite being narrowly denied a chance to serve out the match in the second set, and then being broken at his first chance in the third.

The first Bulgarian to qualify for the season-ending championship, Dimitrov upset the Austrian fourth seed 6-3 5-7 7-5 in the opening match of the Pete Sampras Group.

Thiem gave his best to make a winning start at the ATP elite event but his efforts were not enough to earn the victory for him, coming to London in a poor form after reaching just 1 quarter-final since Roland Garros. "It's not easy playing here for the first time".

The pair went head to head at the ATP Finals on Monday but it was not the one-handed backhand which determined the contest, more a nervousness at key moments which also seemed to stem back to the amateur days of the sport.

"There's always a little bit of tension before every match, and especially here, of course, a little bit because of all the atmosphere, arena".

In a topsy-turvy decider, Dimitrov engineered a break and served for the match only for Thiem to hit back, but that only brought a stay of execution for the Austrian, who served two double faults to hand the advantage back to his opponent.

Dimitrov, who had missed five match points in defeat to Thiem at the Madrid Open earlier in the season, finally managed to stagger across the line but not until he had blown his first two match points.

"I think the best is yet to come", Dimitrov said.

"It, for me, was just one of those new experiences that I think I'm going to remember for the rest of my life, I think appreciate for the rest of my life", Dimitrov said. "I was like, 'Not again, definitely not again, '" he added with a smile.