In the first big official ATP clash of 2018, Grigor Dimitrov and Nick Kyrgios collide Saturday in the Brisbane semifinals.
Dimitrov, who won the Brisbane title last year, hung on to deny Kyle Edmund 6-3, 6-7(3, 6-4. Kyrgios has to overcome a set deficit against Alexandr Dolgopolov 1-6, 6-3, 6-4.
Dimitrov leads the Australian favorite 2-0 including a win in the Cincinnati final over the summer.
“He can do everything pretty much out there on the court,” said Dimitrov. “I have just got to be ready all the time; simple as that. You just never know what can come from him. I think obviously he’s one of the most talented players out there; it’s without a doubt. He can serve and hit every shot. He hits the spots, the slice and is even moving better.
“So he’s definitely a challenger. He has proven himself, last year playing quite a few good matches, getting to the final we played against each other in Cincinnati. He has everything to beat anyone and he has proven that.”
In the other semifinal, surprising 18-year-old Alex De Minaur will take on American Ryan Harrison.
The Pune and Doha finals are set, and each features a veteran Frenchman.
In Pune, Gilles Simon will face US Open finalist Kevin Anderson. While in Doha, Gael Monfils meets young Russian Andrey Rublev. The Rublev saved a match point in a thrilling final set breaker win over Guido Pella.
Monfils advanced to the final without having to hit a ball after top seed Dominic Thiem withdrew due to a fever.
“I’m very sad for Dominic and I hope he will have a speedy recovery,” Monfils said. “I’m happy to be in the final for the fourth time here. I hope this one will be better than the other ones. I’m just pleased [with] the way the year has started and I’ll be ready for tomorrow.”
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