Dimitrov “felt like a rockstar” during “very positive two weeks” in Miami

Grigor Dimitrov is upbeat about his performance in Miami, despite being swept aside by Jannik Sinner in the final on Sunday

Grigor Dimitrov Miami Open 2024 Credit: Julien Nouet / Tennis Majors

Despite being swept aside 6-3, 6-1 in the Miami Open final by Jannik Sinner, Grigor Dimitrov is still optimistic about the past fortnight’s tennis.

After all, the Bulgarian did defeat three top 10 players in a row, downing Hubert Hurkcaz, Alexander Zverev and Carlos Alcaraz in the round of 16, quarter-finals and semi-final in Miami. His deepest-ever run at the Miami Open sees him return to the world’s top 10 for the first time since 2018, sitting at No 9 in the world when the latest ATP rankings are released on Monday.

For Dimitrov, he’s choosing to focus more on this, than the nature of his defeat to Sinner on Sunday.

“I want to keep the positives,” declared Dimitrov in his post-final press conference in Miami. “A lot had also happened behind the scenes. I’ve beaten very good players. A lot of positives for me.” 

“I don’t have much time to be down on myself,” he continued. “I don’t want to be too hard on myself. Of course it hurts. Nobody wants to lose in the final. But overall it’s been a very positive two weeks for me.”

Dimitrov feeling the love in Miami

As one of the most popular players on the ATP Tour, Dimitrov shared how he felt the love from the Miami crowd on his run to the final this weekend.

“I felt like a rockstar these last few days,” confessed the 32-year-old. “I really felt embraced, felt the love of the crowd. It’s been amazing weeks honestly.”

Dimitrov will take confidence from his form in Miami as he heads to the European clay, with the Bulgarian next in action in Monte-Carlo a week from now. 

“It’s something I’m looking forward to,” said Dimitrov of the upcoming clay court season, before sharing his immediate plan to recover from Miami. “When you lose matches it doesn’t matter if it’s like that or three sets. I need some days off to reassess where I’m at and get back at it, it’s the only way.

“I still can compete against these guys and do good against them. For sure Sinner is the one to chase right now.”

Sinner impressive, but not the toughest, says Dimitrov

While Dimitrov isn’t dwelling on his loss to Sinner, he did take the time to share a few kind words on the Italian’s performance.

“Jannik has been playing amazing tennis,” said Dimitrov. “It’s impressive to see him keeping this way of playing.

“He plays his shots with zero doubt. It’s just clear that it’s time for his prime tennis. Can he play better? I don’t know. He’s the one who has to show up and he’s the best player right now in the world.”

Dimitrov did reveal that despite the one-sided match today, it still wasn’t his most challenging time on the tennis court. That came years ago, against Roger Federer.

“The toughest player I’ve ever played at his absolute prime was Roger,” confessed Dimitrov.” I remember one day at Wimbledon I wanted to dig a hole and disappear. I’ve not felt that way against the other ones.”

Fingers crossed for the rest of the ATP Tour that Sinner doesn’t reach that level. Judging by the way the 22-year-old is tracking, however, that could well be the case with Sinner now rising to No 2 in the world on Monday.

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