Dimitrov: ‘It Was That Low I Don’t Even Want To Go There’
Former World No. 3 reacts to reaching the US Open semi-finals
Grigor Dimitrov believes that working hard and trusting the process in recent weeks has helped him get out of his slump and regain confidence.
The Bulgarian, who beat five-time former champion Roger Federer in five sets at the US Open on Tuesday night, admitted, “I kept on believing in the process, kept on working, kept on trying to improve, whatever else I had to improve on my end. I really controlled the things that I could.
“I think it’s as simple as that. Sometimes the most simple things are hardest. It was not a pretty time. I’m not going to lie. But for me, also today, I don’t want to sound too humble, but it was just another match for me really. I don’t want to say I had nothing to lose, because I felt I did.
“I just came out prepared the best that I could, especially coming out from the past two weeks of preparation, fitness [and] good matches. I’m trying to build off that. Little by little things are starting to fall into their place. Today was just another step.”
There has been little for the Bulgarian to cheer about since winning the 2017 Nitto ATP Finals and climbing to a career-high No. 3 in the ATP Rankings, but his performance over the past eight days at the US Open indicate he may have turned a corner.
When asked for his lowest moment over the past 20 months, the World No. 78 said, “It was that low that I don’t even want to go there anymore. It was just obviously injury, losing points, ATP Ranking. That’s the lowest point for any player.
“I think the past six, seven months have been pretty rough for me. But I had somebody to lean on, my friends, my family. I kept on believing again in the work, the rehab I had to put behind my [right] shoulder, the exercise, the practice, fixing up the racquet a little bit. There were so many things I had to adjust in such a small, but big period of time.”
Dimitrov added his late-night victory over Federer was “pretty special” as he was able to control his nerves when it came to the crunch, at the end.
“It was one of those days that when I was serving for the match, I was just as relaxed in a sense that I was able to control my nerves pretty well, control my shots, and take the right decision,” says Dimitrov. “That’s the most important.”
Having come into the US Open with a 12-15 record on the 2019 season, Dimitrov is now within one win of 300th career match victories. On Friday, he will take on in-form Daniil Medvedev, who has compiled a 19-2 on the summer North American hard-court swing and qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time.