No. 3 seed Grigor Dimitrov claimed a straight-set win over Mitchell Krueger in his Delray Beach opener but claimed it wasn't easy. Dimitrov, who had a first round bye in Delray Beach, started his Delray Beach campaign with a 7-6 (4) 6-3 win over Krueger.
Dimitrov was expected to play in Dallas last week but a positive COVID-19 test forced him to withdraw from the tournament. Dimitrov was playing his first match since suffering a surprise loss to Benoit Paire in the Australian Open second round.
“It’s always very tough [in your opening match], especially playing the last match on,” Dimitrov said following the victory, per the ATP website. “I’ve been here for a week already and I was eager to get out there and play.
Today was just a match I had to get through. Very tough conditions: rain, wind, cold, hot. It is what it is, and you've got to deal with it”.
Dimitrov escaped with a straight-set win
Dimitrov claimed the first break of the match in the fourth game but got broken back in the fifth game.
Dimitrov saved four break points in the rest of the set, before converting his second set point in the tie-break to win a tight opener. Dimitrov blew an early second set break but broke Krueger again in the fifth and ninth games to escape with a straight-set win.
Meanwhile, home favorite Reilly Opelka beat Jack Sock 6-7 (6) 7-6 (4) 6-1. “I knew I needed to be tough in the breaker and I couldn’t just play balls in the court because he was going to go for it,” Opelka said, noting he sensed his compatriot tiring late in the second set.
“I really was happy that I was still able to be aggressive… I think I did the right thing, played chess out there, and I got the mini-break when I needed it”.