Daniil Medvedev was knocked out by Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov in the fourth round of Indian Wells on Wednesday as the world number two lost 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 to an almost impeccable start.
Medvedev broke Dimitrov’s serve to open the match, easing through a nearly perfect first set in which he won four of his first-served points and fired three aces with only five unforced errors.
The Russian, who won his first major title at the US Open last month, took two breaks in the second set and was on his way to an easy victory.
But Dimitrov returned to regain control of the pace, winning five games in a row, as Medvedev struck at break point to close the second set, before winning three games in a row to open the third.
“Little by little I was trying to stay in the game, stay in the moment and really fight every chance I had. I really had to go for it,” Dimitrov said after the match.
After trailing 15-40 and 4-1, Medvedev’s frustration boiled over as he missed the first serve and threw his racket to the ground in anger. Then he made a double fault giving Dimitrov a break.
Medvedev made a comeback and then remained on serve, but it was too late, when the world number 28 made a spectacular comeback in the next game to win.
“I really wanted to play this match, to be completely honest. I think he’s been able to get past this, like a year and a half, pretty amazing. I think It really motivates me to do better.” .
Medvedev, who won his fourth Masters 1000 title in Toronto earlier this year, told reporters he struggled to control the ball, especially on the first serve, and said he was as tired as Dimitrov did. “Flipped the switch.”
“I can’t remember missing three service games, even four service games, I think, on hard courts,” he said.
“It shows how slow this court is and the conditions, like clay, I would say, which I don’t like, because losing four times is unacceptable.”
Dimitrov now has two wins against Medvedev and will next take on eighth seed Hubert Herkaz in the quarter-final round.
This story has been published without modification in text from a wire agency feed.