A Look Back at Grigor Dimitrov’s 2018

A Look Back at Grigor Dimitrov’s 2018
25 November 2018
Now our TV’s have become inundated with Christmas adverts and the nights are drawing in there can be no better time than now to reflect on a barnstorming year of tennis action.

Although 2018 may not have been a vintage year for Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov but that is not to say it has not had its signature moments.

The year started with a positive outlook and expectations were high after winning the ATP Tour finals at the end of 2017 with the best bookmakers for tennis betting making a beeline for Dimitrov as 2018 to be the year he potentially cracks a Grand Slam for first time.

The season started in traditional fashion down under at the Brisbane International and a run to the semi-finals proved that Dimitrov was in confident mood for the season ahead losing only to home favourite Nick Kyrgios.

The Australian Open followed and Dimitrov gained quick revenge over Kyrgios defeating the Australian in a four-set thriller in round four.

However, the Bulgarian came up against an inspired Kyle Edmund in the quarter-finals losing 1-3 to the spirited Brit.

We did not know it at the time, but that would prove to be the closest Dimitrov would get to a grand slam title in 2018.

However, heading to the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament Dimitrov had yet to fail to reach at least the last eight of a tournament and was in bullish mood.

The man who now lives in Monte Carlo did not drop a set in four straight games on his way to the final of the indoor tournament but came up against a resurgent Roger Federer in the final with the Swiss taking the title with a comfortable 2-0 win.

Defeat in the final appeared to affect Dimitrov as the next three tournaments saw him fail to make the quarter-final stage at all with a first round defeat in the Dubai Tennis Championship, a second-round exit at Indian Wells and a third-round dismissal at Miami Masters.

However, returning to adopted home at the Monte Carlo Masters saw Dimitrov register another final-four berth losing out to Rafael Nadal for a place in the final.

The Monte Carlo Masters was the start of the clay court season and immediately after was the Barcelona Open in which a solid run to the quarter-finals was his reward.

However, then a series of tournaments which proved that perhaps clay is not Dimitrov’s strongest type of surface failing to progress past the first round at the Madrid Masters and second round at the Rome Masters.

The French Open followed and for the third time in his career, the third round equalled his best ever performance at the year’s second tennis major.

Dimitrov played only two singles tournaments on grass all season and neither yielded any form of success.

A second-round exit at the hands of Novak Djokovic at Queens was followed up a first round exit at Wimbledon after being unfortunate to be drawn against the unseeded and returning from injury Stan Wawrinka in the draw of round one.

Back to the hard court then and back to back quarter-finals at the Rogers Cup and Cincinnati Masters restored some damaged pride over a difficult summer but another first round exit at the hands of Stan Wawrinka at the season’s final Grand Slam in the US Open closed out the majors in disappointing style.

Early exits at the China Open, BA-CA Tennis Trophy Wien and Paris Masters may have ended Dimitrov’s 2018 in complete contrast to 2017’s success but the year has been one where the Bulgarian has been seeking consistency as opposed to blow0away performances.

2019 is a new opportunity and at 27 Grigor Dimitrov has more than enough time on his side.

Expect a resurgence next year with one eye firmly on taking a first Grand Slam title.

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