©

Watch highlights of Grigor Dimitrov beating Juan Martin del Potro, and Nick Kyrgios advancing at the China Open in Beijing on Wednesday. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com. Photo: China Open/VCG.

Dimitrov Sweeps delPo, Into Beijing QFs

2016 finalist will next meet Bautista Agut

Before mid-August, Grigor Dimitrov had lost all five of his FedEx ATP Head2Head match-ups with Juan Martin del Potro. The Bulgarian had never been able to solve the game of the big-hitting Argentine.

How things have changed. Dimitrov won his second consecutive match against del Potro on Wednesday at the China Open, coming through in a tight second-round affair 7-6(6), 7-5 to move into the quarter-finals in Beijing and boost his chances of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals.

“Very pleased that I was able to finish in straight sets. DelPo is an absolutely unbelievable competitor... Every time we play it's absolutely stunning. He's a great guy. I love practising with him. I love competing against him,” Dimitrov said.

You May Also Like: Harrison Edges Finals Contender Anderson In Tokyo

The third seed was down a break in the second set and served at 2-5 to stay in the set. But Dimitrov ran off five consecutive games, including two breaks, to improve to 2-5 against del Potro in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series. The win adds 45 more points to Dimitrov's Emirates ATP Race To London tally, giving him 3,185 points, 530 behind fourth-placed Dominic Thiem, who lost in Tokyo on Tuesday.

“I really needed that match... I just had to find a way today. I fought really hard, lowered my expectations, stayed positive,” Dimitrov said. “He's the kind of competitor who can beat anybody... There's not going to be any freebies against him. So I had to work, work and only work today. That was it. I didn't think I played my best tennis but it feels awesome to win on days like that.”

See Who's Pushing Dimitrov In The Emirates ATP Race To London

Dimitrov is seeking to make his debut at the season-ending tournament, to be held 12-19 November at The O2 in London. The right-hander will next face Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut, who was leading Aljaz Bedene 6-0, 4-0 when the Brit retired.

More stories like this in: