Granted a reprieve

If Stockholm Open, Sweden

[CR10] Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) got off to a nervous start today trying to defend his title, but so did his opponent, [CR59] Teymuraz Gabashvili (RUS).  Dimitrov served for the first set, up 5-1, only for Gabashvili to raise the level of his play and prevent Dimitrov from easily winning the set. Dimitrov had to work hard to win the first set as Gabashvili concentrated on minimizing the errors in his game and kept the ball out of Grigor’s comfort zone.  He would even the set 5-5; however, Gabashvili could not maintain his focused play and was broken at 5-6 to lose the first set 5-7.

Gabashvili would get broken in the second set and fought back once again, this time, taking the set to a tie-break. He fought so hard, and got so close, but it was just not enough, again.  He has to figure out why he cannot get over that final barrier in so many of these matches.  He is a very anxious player and that may be his Achilles heel; the minute he realizes that he is close, he panics, and shots that were previously winners are now inexplicably errors.

Despite winning the match 7-5, 7-6(4), Dimitrov has to be displeased with his lack of focus, a different opponent and he may not have gotten the victory.

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