Dimitrov Battles Past Sugita In Rotterdam Opener
Grigor Dimitrov began his campaign for a first ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament title with a hard-fought 6-4, 7-6(5) win over Yuichi Sugita on Wednesday.
Watch Hot Shot As Sugita Floors Dimitrov
The 2013 semi-finalist was made to work hard throughout the one-hour, 46-minute encounter against Sugita, but found his best level at the tail-end of both sets to secure the win. In the first set, Dimitrov broke his Japanese opponent at the perfect time, in a marathon tenth game, to take a one-set advantage. Sugita, who was making his debut in Rotterdam at the age of 29, served to force a deciding set at 5-4, but Dimitrov once again showed his quality in the crucial moments to break serve. The Bulgarian went on to clinch victory on his second match point in the tie-break.
Standing between Dimitrov and a place in the quarter-finals is Filip Krajinovic. The Rolex Paris Masters finalist edged 17-year old Felix Auger-Aliassime 6-2, 3-6, 7-5 on Tuesday.
Montpellier champion Lucas Pouille’s first match after winning his fifth career title ended in defeat, after #NextGenATP star Andrey Rublev shocked the No. 7 seed 7-5, 6-4. On his main draw debut in Rotterdam, Rublev broke the Frenchman on four occasions, after trailing 0-3 in the first set, to secure his place in the second round. The Russian No. 1 will next face Damir Dzumhur who upset another of last week’s success stories, Marius Copil, 6-4, 6-4.
Did You Know?
Grigor Dimitrov made his ATP World Tour main-draw debut and secured his first tour-level win in the Netherlands. In 2008, Dimitrov lost to Igor Andreev in s-Hertogenbosch in his first tour encounter and won his first match at tour-level in 2009 against Tomas Berdych in Rotterdam.