Skip to main content
Tennis

Dimitrov advances against Grand Slam debutant Safwat

Mohamed Safwat had never played in the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament.
Mohamed Safwat had never played in the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament. Reuters/Pascal Rossignol
2 min

Fourth seed Grigor Dimitrov moved into the second round of the French Open on Sunday with a straight sets win over Mohamed Safwat from Egypt.

Advertising

The 27-year-old from Cairo, who had lost in the last round of the qualifying tournament, was handed a spot in the first round after Dimitrov’s original opponent, Victor Troicki, withdrew with a back injury.

“I’d just finished my warm up and about 20 minutes before the start of the match I went into the locker room where I saw Victor who said: ‘Good luck.’ He told me he’d pulled out," said Dimitrov. "That’s the way it is and I just had to adjust to playing a different person.”

Safwat, 27, the world number 182, had never appeared in the main draw of a Grand Slam. He betrayed his inexperience during the first set which Dimitrov claimed 6-1 in 24 minutes.

“At the beginning I was trying to figure out the court,” said Safwat. “I had to find out if it was fast or slow. It was different from the courts I had been playing on.”

Though he lost the second set 6-4, that at least lasted 48 minutes and he showed more grit in the third especially when serving at 4-4.

Safwat fell to 0-40 but fought back to claim the game and take a 5-4 lead. It went to a tiebreak and the Bulgarian ran away with it seven points to one. It was all oer in two hours and two minutes.

“This is a milestone in my career,” Safwat added. “I need to stop and look at what I’ve done and what can be improved - whether that’s mentally or physically and what I need to add to my game.

“I mustn’t stop here by saying: 'I played on the centre court.' I need to see what I need to go up because that is always the goal and the dream - to go up and not to be happy with what you’ve got.”

 

Daily newsletterReceive essential international news every morning

Page not found

The content you requested does not exist or is not available anymore.