Denis Shapovalov: It's amazing what Grigor Dimitrov has done for Bulgaria

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Denis Shapovalov: It's amazing what Grigor Dimitrov has done for Bulgaria

Top-ranked Canadian tennis player Denis Shapovalov is thrilled with his experience of being in Bulgaria for the first time as he insists he has arrived to Sofia without big expectations as he just wants to enjoy another week of tennis on the court.

Shapovalov, who suffered a shock first round loss in Vienna to Jurij Rodionov two weeks ago, pulled out of last week's Paris Masters and lost all of his chances of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals. After pulling out of the Paris Masters, the belief was that world No.

12 Shapovalov would also withdraw from Sofia and end his season but the Canadian decided to show up in Bulgaria and play the tournament. "The tournament is really nice. They are doing a really good job with the players.

It's my first time in Bulgaria but it seems like I have got a lot of love and fans here so it's always amazing coming to countries where you have a lot of support. I'm really happy to be here and glad that I can play another tournament.

I mean, no expectations, just want to play some more tennis and I'm really excited to be here," Shapovalov said during his virtual press conference in Sofia.

Shapovalov speaks highly of fan favorite Grigor Dimitrov

Former world No.

10 Shapovalov was asked about top-ranked Bulgarian tennis player Dimitrov during his press conference and the Canadian had nothing but good say of the Bulgarian. Dimitrov, ranked at No. 19 in the world, has won eight titles over the course of his career and his best ranking saw him sitting at No.

3 in the world. Dimitrov has made semifinal at each Grand Slam except the French Open and he won his biggest title at the Nitto ATP Finals in 2017. "Oh yeah, of course. I mean, Grigor has been around for so many years and he is an amazing player.

I feel like he has definitely brought a lot to Bulgarian tennis. I have seen so many guys coming up from Bulgaria so it's pretty amazing what he has been able to do for the country," Shapovalov said of Dimitrov. "The facilities here are beautiful, they have done such a great job with the stadium, the practice courts too, I can't remember what the place is called but it's super nice, nice courts and super nice place. So it's really nice to see that tennis is so nice here."