Bernard downed by Dimitrov
In his first match since the Australian Open, Bernard Tomic has fallen in the opening round of the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Tomic was beaten by fellow young gun Grigor Dimitrov, with the Bulgarian – 17 months older and four ranking places higher than Tomic at No.41 – winning 6-3 3-6 6-3.
The Australian had begun 2013 in blistering fashion with three wins at the Hopman Cup, a title in Sydney and a run to the third round at Melbourne Park.
Yet on the indoor hardcourts of Rotterdam he was unable to subdue Dimitrov, who moved through to the second round in just over 90 minutes.
For all the improvements Tomic has made to his serve, it was Dimitrov who dominated with his delivery, serving up twice as many aces, winning more points behind his first serve and saving a higher percentage of break points.
Dimitrov, who reached the final of the recent Brisbane International, will next take on Russia’s Nikolay Davydenko.
“I think it was a pretty fair match from both of us,” said Dimitrov.
“We both struggled at the beginning of the match. In the first set, he was trying to find his rhythm, and then he got into the match. At the end, I had a couple of good returns in the third set and afterwards, I served it out.”
Tomic is entered into next week’s Open 13 in Marseille, France, but missed the tournament’s main draw ranking cut-off given he was ranked outside the top 60 when tournament entries were accepted several weeks ago.
He must hope for a wildcard or successful passage through the qualifying draw if he is to contest the ATP 250 event.