GRIGOR Dimitrov joined girlfriend Maria Sharapova in slipping out of Wimbledon and was more keen to talk about the state of the courts than his high-profile love life.
The Bulgarian lost a five-set match to Grega Zemlja yesterday, in an eventful finish to a contest which started on Thursday but was halted at 9-8 in the decider due to the weather.
Dimitrov took a fall in the opening game to offer up a match point to his opponent and, even though he saved that, he was broken the next time he had the serve and lost 11-9.
Dimitrov was clearly unhappy about the playing conditions – he took to his chair for ten minutes after the slip, which came amid relatively heavy rainfall – and gesticulated about the bounce of the ball in the final game.
His defeat carried unfortunate shades of Sharapova’s exit on Wednesday – the Russian too struggled with her footing – but he did not want to talk about her when asked afterwards, although he did confirm that they are an item, something he had not publicly done.
“I am here to talk about slippery courts, how many injuries we had, pull-outs...,” he said.
“It was a tough day and the rain was pretty tough. It was a bit slippery. I think a lot of people have been talking about the weather and it has been tough for the aggressive movers.
“But you have got to adjust. It’s not going to change.”
SERGIY Stakhovsky admitted he was “blinded” by his famous victory over Roger Federer as he exited Wimbledon yesterday.
The Ukrainian shattered Federer’s dream of winning a record eighth title at the All England Club by triumphing on Centre Court on Wednesday.
However, less than 48 hours later, Stakhovsky’s tournament was ended by Jurgen Melzer with the world No 116 falling to a 6-2, 2-6, 7-5, 6-3 defeat.
“It was quite hard for me because yesterday was a busy day,” Stakhovsky said. “Everybody wanted to chat. Everybody wanted a piece. I was trying to get out of Wimbledon as soon as I could. I think I left around 4pm or 5pm, but I gave a lot of interviews that day.
“Nobody is going to take it away from me. If someone would ask me, would you rather beat Roger and lose in next round, I would always take it, obviously. I’m just a little disappointed that I got so blinded by the game I produced with Roger that I kept going with the same game I played against Jurgen. If I would be just a bit more smarter on that court, I could have been a winner today.”
Despite his disappointing defeat, Stakhovsky has learned a lot in SW19 – namely how to avoid falling into a post-upset trap.
“It’s just a mental thing,” he added. “I was not ready for such a turnover. Next time if I’m able to produce such a result, I’ll be more prepared and I will know how to behave myself.”