Wed, Jul 02, 2014 - Page 19 News List

‘Baby Fed’ looks to beat Murray on home soil


Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov returns to Argentine Leonardo Mayer in their men’s singles fourth-round match on Day 7 of Wimbledon in London on Monday.

Photo: AFP

Grigor Dimitrov is relishing the chance to down Andy Murray in his own backyard when the young pretender takes on the British reigning champion in the Wimbledon quarter-finals today.

The Bulgarian said he was in it to win it against the third seed and would be bringing his “big game” for what will be his last-eight debut at the All England Tennis Club.

Dimitrov, 23, said it was exactly the sort of lion’s den he wanted to hurl himself into and is even visualizing taking Murray down in straight sets.

“It’s not a new opponent for me. I know him. There’s nothing major for me that I need to be aware of,” Dimitrov said.

“I’m happy that I’m in the quarter-final. Just going to give credit to myself for that, but my job isn’t over yet,” the 11th seed said. “Every tournament I enter is to win the whole event.”

Dimitrov set up the tantalizing clash after defeating Argentine Leonardo Mayer 6-4, 7-6 (6), 6-2.

The match is almost certainly going to be staged on Centre Court, where Murray not only ended Britain’s 77-year wait for a Wimbledon men’s singles champion last year, but also won gold at the London 2012 Olympics.

However, Dimitrov said he was not going to feel intimidated on Murray’s stomping ground.

“It’s his home basically here. He’s been playing a lot of matches on Centre Court. He knows his way around the grass pretty good,” the Queen’s Club winner said.

“You want to put yourself to play on that kind of stage. I’m not going to lie. It’s an unbelievable court to play on,” Dimitrov said.

The man once dubbed “Baby Fed,” in a nod to 17-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer, is not short on confidence.

“Of course, the best-case scenario is straight sets,” he said. “I’m not playing against a mediocre player, so I just need to be on my best behavior.”

While Dimitrov thinks he has gone beyond the “Baby Fed” tag, Murray thinks he should never have had it in the first place.

“Everyone was comparing him to Federer. That’s impossible to live up to what Roger’s achieved. Maybe no one again will ever win that many Slams, but now he’s [Dimitrov] starting to come into his prime... It will be a hard match for me,” the Briton said.

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