Erste Bank Open: Grigor Dimitrov - Stefanos Tsitsipas
- Title : Erste Bank Open: Grigor Dimitrov - Stefanos Tsitsipas
The first round of the Erste Bank Open has been finished, and the player field has along these lines been split. The fight for the prize pool of 1,550,950 Euros and the 500 positioning focuses for the victor is increasing, particularly since the ATP end of the season games are practically around the bend. Keep going on the middle court in the present round is a highest point between the previous world three Grigor Dimitrov and the world six Stefanos Tsitsipas.
In 2017, Grigor Dimitrov was at the peak of his career. With four titles recorded during the year, including the lucrative and prestigious ATP playoffs, the then world number three was a man no one wanted to meet. Predicted a bright future from a young age, and called "Baby Fed" after his almost identical style of play as the legendary Roger Federer, it looked like the Bulgarian would finally step out of the Swiss' shadow. But then everything went downhill. After a final loss against Federer in Rotterdam in 2018, the inequalities began to creep into the game, self-confidence dropped, and the 29-year-old has not reached a final since then. After a dramatic drop to number 78 in the world rankings and various injury problems, Dimitrov shocked the world when he came out of nowhere and beat Roger Federer in the quarterfinals of the US Open. Since then, the form has been on a steady rise, and the ranking has kept pace with the current world twenty. The Bulgarian played well last week in Antwerp where he reached the semifinals, and impressed when 18-ranked Karen Khachanov was defeated in straight sets in Vienna's first round.
One who did not impress in the first round was his opponent Stefanos Tsitsipas. The philosophically inclined Greek has quickly established himself among the absolute elite since his breakthrough in 2018, and the 22-year-old made his debut as a top 10 player last year. He managed in the final stages of that season, just as Dimitrov did two years earlier, to win the ATP playoffs where he beat both Roger Federer and Dominic Thiem. 2020 has been a much tougher year for the Greek, who, among other things, accounted for a remarkable collapse in the US Open. Borna Coric was already halfway to the flight home at a disadvantage with 1-2 in sets and 1-5 in paper clips, but Tsitsipas burned six match balls and then managed to lose the match in a decisive tiebreak. Since then, however, the form has improved, with a strong semi-final in Hamburg and the French Open in a row.
The world six, however, withdrew from St. Petersburg with a leg injury when the indoor season was about to begin. The indoor premiere thus came here, and the first round against Jan-Lennard Struff was shaky. In the first set, the Greek won only five points out of 35 possible on return, and was forced to come back from a set disadvantage. When he was then asked about his physical form after the match, Tsitsipas ducked the question, and also wanted to highlight the favorite in this match at Dimitrov.
Not everything seems to be right right now. This should be a really even match, between two players who possess good power on serve and their basics, but also move incredibly well. Both use a one-handed backhand, but Tsitsipas is the slightly more aggressive player and also the man with bigger weapons.
While the Bulgarian impressed, however, the Greek has raised question marks, and the favorite to below 1.50 thus feels doubtful. Dimitrov is incredibly talented, and the former world three has everything needed to follow up the heavy victory against Khachanov with another scalp.
My prediciction: Dimitrov win