Six years later, Grigor Dimitrov is back in a Masters 1000 tournament final.
The Bulgarian overcame strong resistance on Saturday from seventh-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas with a 6-3, 6-7 (1), 7-6 (3) victory to reach the final of the Paris Masters.
Dimitrov served well, hit 38 winners and was flawless at the net. He made the most of Tsitsipas’ poor start to claim the first set before his Greek rival saved two break points at 4-4 in the second set and started a comeback.
Dimitrov made several mistakes in the tiebreaker as Tsitsipas forced a decider, gesturing toward the crowd to ask for support.
“I am just happy I was able to get through that match in such a manner,” Dimitrov said.
Tsitsipas failed to convert four break-point chances in the third game.
“After that second set, especially the tiebreak, it was getting very tricky again. 15-40 down in the third again and I was just thinking it can’t keep going like this, so I have to change something,” added the 32-year-old.
The World No. 17 rose to the occasion in the final tiebreaker when he hit three superb passing shots, including one to seal the match.
“The first five points in the tiebreak were excellent,” Dimitrov said. “I took those chances and that was all I could do against such a high-quality player. If you let him dictate, you are done. But I kept on believing and kept staying focused and made sure every time I had the ball on the racquet, I did something with it.”
Dimitrov is chasing his first tour-level tournament since 2017 when he won the ATP Finals. He reached his only previous Masters 1000 final the same year in Cincinnati.
He will be up against either top-ranked Novak Djokovic or Andrey Rublev in Sunday’s final.
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