Grigor Dimitrov slides out of singles
Watched by his girlfriend Maria Sharapova, in sunglasses that were hardly needed, the 29th seed Grigor Dimitrov slid out of the men's singles after a dramatic half an hour's play that was interrupted by light drizzle. Resuming at 8-9 in the final set, he never got a grip on the match against Grega Zemlja and was eventually beaten 3-6, 7-6, 3-6, 6-4, 11-9.
At 30-30 in the first game of the day Dimitrov slipped following his serve and, lying on the ground, could barely lay a racket on the ball. That gave Zemlja his third match point of the contest, which was immediately held up as drizzle began.
The players sat on court for a nervous 15 minutes before Dimitrov saved the match point, as well as two more in the same game. Serving at 9-10 the Bulgarian then went 0-30 down and despite retrieving the position, he was finally passed at the net to give Zemlja, ranked 55 in the world, victory.
An enthralling match had taken just over four hours.
Dimitrov admitted that conditions were difficult, although he insisted on giving credit to his Zemlja.
“ I don't remember when I played here and you're sliding so much on the court,” he said. “It started raining during the warm-up and I was expecting the chair-man [umpire] to say something. When I slipped, I fell down, I hit my hip. I told him, I'm not serving. Basically we had to stop and wait for another chance.
"It's the same for you and the opponent. It was a great match, great five-setter. (I've) Got to give all the credit to my opponent today. “
He even agreed to answer one question about Sharapova, saying: “I feel even more pumped and happy that she's there for me. I think that's what counts the most.”
Sami Khedira to Arsenal: Midfield omitted from Real Madrid squad for Spanish Super Cup
David Gold furious after Carlton Cole parody account mocks up a picture of West Ham chairman as a suspect in the Madeleine McCann case
Paul Scholes: Manchester United need five experienced players who can turn round a desperate situation
Angel Di Maria latest: Manchester United target is Real Madrid's 'best player', says Diego Simeone
Luis Nani exit: The curious case of the Manchester United winger
- 1 Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
- 2 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
- 3 Paul Scholes: Manchester United need five experienced players who can turn round a desperate situation
- 4 Nicki Minaj 'Anaconda': Singer finally releases predictable video
- 5 James Foley 'beheading': Met police warn public watching murder video could be criminal offence
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
Crisis? What crisis? A visiting US doctor gives the NHS a rave review
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
Scottish Independence Referendum: Salmond described as 'arrogant, ambitious and dishonest' by Scottish women