United Cup

Team Bulgaria Hits Cottesloe Beach In Perth

Dimitrov, Tomova take time to sightsee before start of United Cup on December 29
December 27, 2022
Grigor Dimitrov and Viktoriya Tomova at Cottesloe Beach in Perth.
Grigor Dimitrov and Viktoriya Tomova at Cottesloe Beach in Perth. By Leigh Rogers

Team Bulgaria took some time out from their United Cup preparations to visit the stunning Cottesloe Beach in Perth Tuesday.

Led by top-ranked players Grigor Dimitrov and Viktoriya Tomova, the Bulgarian team greeted local surf life savers and got competitive with some beach games. “It’s fun when we can do some social activities, especially outside of the sport. I think everybody enjoyed it,” said former world No.3 Dimitrov. “The whole team is in good spirits. We’re trying to make the most of (our time in Perth) and looking forward to the competition.”

The United Cup, a mixed-team event consisting of 18 nations, begins on 29 December with round-robin matches in Perth, Brisbane and Sydney.Each United Cup tie comprises two men’s and two women’s singles matches, as well as one mixed doubles match, played across two days. Four countries then advance to the knockout stage in Sydney, which runs from 6-8 January.

Team Bulgaria begins its campaign against top seeds Greece at Perth’s RAC Arena on Thursday, with Dimitrov scheduled to face world No.4 Stefanos Tsitsipas in the opening session. Dimitrov is looking to improve a 1-5 win-loss record against Tsitsipas.

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“I think it’s a great match up. We’ve played a few times against each other and on quite a few occasions he got the best of me,” said Dimitrov. “But here is a different format and I have the team behind me, so I’m looking forward to it.”

Dimitrov, the playing captain for Team Bulgaria, is thrilled a mixed team event has been added to the tour schedule. “Everybody is excited. It’s a completely new format for everyone and it’s the first year, so we don’t know what to expect. But I’m very pleased we are able to team up together and make some new memories,” said the world No.28.

Tomova, the highest-ranked Bulgarian woman at world No.90, agrees. “I like it very much,” she said of the innovative new event. “Every week we play individually, so it’s great to team up with our Bulgarian team-mates and play for our country.”

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