Dimitrov Sweeps delPo, Into Beijing QFs
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.
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.”
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.