ATP Indian Wells: Grigor Dimitrov stuns Daniil Medvedev and ruins his No. 1 chances

The US Open champion Daniil Medvedev has ruined his potential year-end no. 1 position and the ATP throne following an unexpected 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 loss to Grigor Dimitrov in the Indian Wells fourth round. The Russian led 6-4, 4-1 before fading from the court and losing 11 of the last 14 games for an early exit and a massive blow in the battle with Novak Djokovic. Dimitrov claimed 11 points more than his rival and fired 25 winners and 36 unforced errors, finding his strokes in the encounter’s second part to topple the top seed and reach his first Masters 1000 quarter-final since Rome last year. Medvedev had the upper hand in the shortest range up to four strokes, and he lost that advantage in the mid-range and most extended exchanges to experience an early exit and propel Dimitrov into the last eight. The Bulgarian made a terrible start and netted a slice in the opening game to experience a break and push the rival in front.

Grigor Dimitrov came from 6-4, 4-1 down to beat Daniil Medvedev in the fourth round.

Daniil cemented the lead with a backhand down the line winner in game two and saved a break point at 2-1 to remain in front following a forehand winner. After that early break, Dimitrov found the rhythm in his games and held at 30 in game seven to stay within one break deficit. Grigor faced troubles behind the initial shot at 3-5 and saved two set points to prolong the action and gain a boost. Serving for the set in game ten, Daniil held at love to wrap up the opener, looking good ahead of set number two. Dimitrov sprayed a backhand mistake to get broken in the opening game before pulling it back a few minutes later with a forehand winner that stayed away from Medvedev’s reach. In the third game, the Bulgarian hit a double fault to lose serve at love and netted an easy forehand in game four to fall 3-1 behind. From 40-15 in game five, Grigor dropped four straight points to find himself 6-4, 4-1 down and close to the exit door.

Losing focus, the Russian hit a double fault in game six to suffer a break and confidence, as the Bulgarian broke him again in game eight to lock the result at 4-4. Grigor held at love in game nine and delivered the third straight break a few minutes later to rattle off five consecutive games and force a decider after Daniil’s volley error. Medvedev hit another double fault at the beginning of the third set to suffer the fourth break in a row and lose momentum. In the fifth game, Dimitrov placed a volley winner at the net to open a 4-1 gap and grabbed another break following Medvedev’s double fault. Serving for the victory, Grigor sprayed a backhand mistake in the seventh game to experience a break before holding at love at 5-3 to seal the deal and defeat the top seed.

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