Dimitrov edges Thiem
London, UK - Grigor Dimitrov launched his bid for glory at the ATP Finals on Monday with a 6-3, 5-7, 7-5 hard-fought victory over Dominic Thiem.
A single break was enough for Bulgaria's Dimitrov to take the first set, with Thiem only managing to land 37 per cent of first serves in front of a sizeable crowd at London's O2 Arena.
In a tight second set, sixth seed Dimitrov earned a potentially decisive break point in the 11th game but Thiem, whose service numbers improved significantly, held firm, lashing a forehand winner down the line and edging ahead 6-5.
Austria's Thiem, the fourth seed, pressed home his advantage, making the most of some nervy play by Dimitrov to break to love and level the match.
In a topsy-turvy decider, Dimitrov served for the match after a single break but blew his chance as Thiem broke back to level the set at 5-5. But the Bulgarian hit back again immediately to break his opponent and, despite squandering two match points, held his nerve to close out the match.
Earlier on Sunday, in the other match of Roger Federer's group, rising German star Alexander Zverev beat Croatia's Marin Cilic 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.