Brisbane Showdown: Dimitrov vs. Kyrgios
With their incredible athleticism and shot-making capabilities, Dimitrov and Kyrgios are two of the most exciting players on the ATP World Tour and look set to produce a classic when they collide at the ATP World Tour 250 tournament in Queensland.
ATPWorldTour.com looks back at their two previous matches.
2015 BNP Paribas Open, Second Round, Indian Wells – Dimitrov d. Kyrgios 76(2) 36 76(4)
Heading into their first meeting in the Californian desert, both players were in-form after strong starts during the Australian swing.
Their Indian Wells duel was a classic, lasting two hours and 10 minutes, featuring a number of awe-inspiring rallies including an unforgettable Hot Shot winner from then-World No. 11 Dimitrov.
Kyrgios would serve for the win at 5-4 in the decider, but a nasty fall would hamper the Australian’s movement and, after rallying to force a final set tie-break, Dimitrov would prove too solid to triumph 7-6(2), 3-6, 7-6(4).
2017 Western & Southern Open, Final, Cincinnati – Dimitrov d. Kyrgios 63 75
Two years and five months would pass before they met again, in entirely different circumstances. Dimitrov, once more ranked at No. 11 in the ATP Rankings having dropped at low at No. 40 in July 2016, had produced an ATP World Tour-best start to 2017, while Kyrgios performances at ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament in Indian Wells and Miami were promising.
On U.S. soil once more, Kyrgios produced his best level again to defeat Rafael Nadal en route to his first Masters 1000 final. Dimitrov didn’t drop a set on his march to a debut Masters 1000 championship match of his own, defeating Juan Martin del Potro and John Isner along the way.
In the biggest match of both of their careers, it was Dimitrov who rose to the occasion conceding just 13 points on his serve throughout the 85-minute contest. Dimitrov held 52 of his 53 service games across the week to lift the trophy and pocket 1,000 ATP Ranking points.
On Saturday at the Brisbane International presented by Suncorp, both players come into this third encounter full of belief after navigating tricky semi-final paths.
Dimitrov will feel invincible after saving two match points down in his opening-round against John Millman and outlasting a strong performance from Kyle Edmund in the quarter-finals. Kyrgios will also be encouraged by his abilities to turn on the style, like a tap, as he did in both of his three-set wins against Matthew Ebden and Alexandr Dolgopolov.
Who knows what the next instalment of this great rivalry has to offer. Only one thing is for sure; you won’t want to miss it.