“Chasing Every Ball Down”: Grigor Dimitrov on His Win Over Aslan Karatsev at San Diego Open

Published 10/02/2021, 4:36 AM EDT
Tennis – ATP Masters 1000 – Italian Open – Foro Italico, Rome, Italy – September 14, 2020 Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov in action during his first round match against Italy’s Gianluca Mager Pool via REUTERS/Riccardo Antimiani


Grigor Dimitrov has had quite a remarkable professional career till now. The Bulgarian has achieved a total of 8 ATP titles in his career. Dimitrov has notably reached a career-high ranking of World No. 3 in 2017. Moreover, he has also won the Bulgarian Sportsperson of the Year award in 2014 and 2017.

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After having an unfortunate exit at US Open 2021, Grigor Dimitrov competing at the San Diego Open. The Bulgarian handsomely reached the semi-finals of the event, beating the in-form Aslan Karatsev in the quarter-finals. Dimitrov will lock horns against the second seed Casper Ruud in the semi-finals.

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Grigor Dimitrov into his first semifinal in 2021

After surpassing Aslan Karatsev in the quarter-finals of the San Diego Open, Grigor Dimitrov elegantly reached his first semi-finals of the 2021 season. Dimitrov beat Karatsev in a thriller three-set match. In the post-match interview, Dimitrov confidently remarked some great points.

Sep 1, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria hits a shot against Alexei Popyrin of Australia in a second round match on day three of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

He said, “I thought I came off the blocks pretty good. The second set, I lost two very very important games and that caused the set. So I had to regroup at the beginning of the third, I had the break. But he was putting constant pressure, he’s such a good player, he takes the ball early so give him time, you are done.”

“So I had to find a little bit of a different strategy, especially after the first four games I thought in the third set. Then I started feeling a little bit better, started seeing the ball bigger, making better decisions, less unforced errors. I was chasing every ball down. 

Dimitrov also highlighted his splendid gameplay. He felt good throughout the match and is looking forward to the semi-finals at San Diego Open.

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Dimitrov to face Casper Ruud in the semis

As mentioned earlier, Grigor Dimitrov will be facing the second seed Casper Ruud in the semi-finals of San Diego. The Norwegian has defeated two strong players, Andy Murray and Lorenzo Musetti on his way to the semi-finals.

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Tennis – ATP Masters 1000 – Madrid Open – Caja Magica, Madrid, Spain – May 7, 2021 Norway’s Casper Ruud celebrates after winning his quarter final match against Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik REUTERS/Juan Medina

When asked about Ruud, Dimitrov said,” Great player. Absolutely great, such a great year…  At some point, he was winning every tournament he has playing. Clearly a very tough opponent. Right now I’m just focusing on myself and my side of the net. I’m going to do everything possible to stop him.

Grigor Dimitrov will look to consolidate on his current form and build momentum when facing Ruud. It’s clear Dimitrov respects the challenge his next opponent will bring, however, he’ll look to incline his focus towards his own game plan when it’s time for the match.

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Let us know what you think of the aforementioned match-up in the comments section below.

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Atri Bhatt

142 articles

Atri Bhatt is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. He is pursuing his Master's degree in Sports Management from Deakin University, Australia. In addition to critically analyzing the game, he also plays tennis professionally.

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