Grigor Dimitrov exited the Australian Open after a 4-6, 6-3, 3-6, 4-6 quarterfinal loss to Britain’s Kyle Edmund in yet another tight match for Bulgaria’s world number 3, missing a chance to make the semi-final stage at tennis’s first Grand Slam of the year for a second year running.
Dimitrov ends his Australian swing after eight matches, only one of them won in straight sets. One of those wins was against Edmund in Brisbane, where an ankle sprain late in the third set hobbled the Brit to gift Dimitrov a win in what was an otherwise even match.
Edmund has since recovered and won two five-set matches in Melbourne and, against Dimitrov, was the steadier of the two players, recording 46 winners (to Dimitrov’s 32) and converting five of 15 break points (while Dimitrov went three-for-nine).
For his part, Dimitrov made fewer mistakes (36 unforced errors to 48 for Edmund), but some of them came at the worst time, such as the double faults that handed the Brit crucial breaks of serve in the first and third sets.
Despite an earlier exit than last year, Dimitrov could yet keep his third spot in the ATP Tour rankings if Croatia’s Marin Cilic, who would face Edmund should he prevail over world number one Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals, fails to make the Australian Open final.
With the ATP Tour taking a break next week for the Davis Cup first round, Dimitrov will next play in his home tournament, the Sofia Open, in the second week of February, where he is the top seed and defending the title he won last year.
(Photo: Brad Touesnard/flickr.com)