Sinner too strong for Dimitrov in Miami final

Grigor Dimitrov failed to win a second Masters 1000 title of his career after falling to Jannik Sinner 3-6, 1-6 in nearly an hour and 15 minutes of play in the final in Miami.

The beginning of the match was equal, and in the fourth game the Bulgarian was the first to reach a break point. However, the second-seeded Italian rose to the challenge after Dimitrov escaped to play a forehand, but his shot went wide. Sinner held his serve and this instantly affected Bulgaria's best tennis player, who was broken in the next game. This gave confidence to his opponent, who barely missed from the baseline and Grigor had to save two more break points in the seventh game, which lasted more than eight minutes. There was no break, but on his next serve, the 32-year-old from Haskovo was hesitant again and Sinner wend ahead.

The second set began with no breaks before Sinner denied Dimitrov with a series of great backcourt shots. The Italian was literally flying on the court and trimphed with his first trophy of the tournament at the third attempt, after losing the previous two finals in which he participated - 2021 to Hubert Hurkacz and 2023 to Daniil Medvedev. He lost only three points on the first serve for the whole match, seven on the second and saved the only break point that Grigor had in the opening set. Sinner made three winners less than the Bulgarian, but also a significant number of fewer unforced errors - 9 against a total of 23 for Dimitrov.

For the 22-year-old Sinner, it is his 13th career title with just four losses, his second at the Masters 1000 after Canada last year and third trophy since the start of the year. The Italian No. 1 has been in superb form and has won 25 of his last 26 Tour matches, losing only to Carlos Alcaraz in the semi-finals at Indian Wells earlier this month. From Monday, Sinner will officially be second in the men's world ranking.

Grigor has nothing to be ashamed of after having a great tournament in Florida. Bulgaria's No. 1 racket rattled off three straight wins over top-10 players in the world, including over former No. 2 Alcaraz in the quarterfinals. Dimitrov lost his second straight final of the season after Marseille, leaving Brisbane with the title in January. In total, the Bulgarian has nine trophies in his professional career, his only Masters 1000 being the one in Cincinnati in 2017 - Grigor lost his second consecutive title match in this category after his defeat by world No. 1 Novak Djokovic in Paris late last year. A strong performance in Miami earned Dimitrov a check for $585,000 and, most importantly, a return to the top 10 for the first time in a 260-week absence.

The tennis players will head to the beginning of the clay season, which will be preparatory before the second Grand Slam tournament of the year - Roland Garros, which will be held from May 26 to June 9. /BGNES