Dimitrov to step away from tennis after French Open exit

A disappointing clay-court season culminated in a third-round exit at the French Open, and Grigor Dimitrov wants to take time to reflect.

Grigor Dimitrov in action at the French Open   -  Getty Images

Grigor Dimitrov intends to temporarily step away from tennis after being eliminated from the third round of the French Open on Friday.

Fourth seed Dimitrov was beaten 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 6-4 by Fernando Verdasco on Court 1 at Roland Garros, two days after being pushed to five sets by world number 57 Jared Donaldson.

The Bulgarian reached the semi-finals at the Monte Carlo Masters and the last eight in Barcelona, but he suffered first-round exits at the Madrid Open and the Internazionali d'Italia.

Having struggled during the clay swing and with an 18-11 record on all surfaces this year, Dimitrov feels he needs to reflect on a disappointing spell by taking a break from the sport.

"I definitely need to take some time off now to kind of reassess the whole clay-court season, to be honest," said Dimitrov.

"I think that's going to be the number one priority for me now, to kind of step out from the tennis for a little bit, try to watch some matches and sort of try to progress somehow and just get better.

"How? I mean, we'll figure [it out]. I don't want to be too negative right now. I know it's hard right after the match.

"I have always been a positive thinker, and I want to keep that on the same level right now. Obviously it's tough when you lose a match, but that's how it goes."