Grigor Dimitrov and Nick Kyrgios make early exits in Cincinnati after reaching final last year

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Last year’s Cincinnati finalists Grigor Dimitrov and Nick Kyrgios both suffered three-set defeats in their rain-postponed third rounds on Friday.

Defending champion Dimitrov was down 6-2, 3-6, 1-2 when his clash with Novak Djokovic was halted on Thursday due to showers that have wreaked havoc with the schedule in Mason, Ohio over the past two days.

The Bulgarian, who now trails Djokovic 1-8 head-to-head, had a great start on Thursday, taking the opening set with two breaks, and losing just six points on serve in total. But Djokovic dug in and drew level before play was suspended.

Returning to Centre Court on Friday, Djokovic held on to the service break he had from the day before to complete the win and set up a quarter-final against Milos Raonic, scheduled shortly after on Friday.

Dimitrov, who started the week ranked No. 5 but will likely drop to No. 7 after his third-round exit, has not had the best results this season, despite finishing 2017 on a high, claiming the ATP Finals crown.

He’s taking lots of positives though from his quarter-final showing in Toronto last week, and his two matches in Cincinnati.

“It’s going to be up and down, for sure, I think. I haven’t played that many matches, so every match that I win or I play well, I want to take the positive out of it,” said the 27-year-old.

“And even if, from negative matches like last week when I lost to Anderson, I played a really bad match, but in the same time, I’m, like, okay, I need to try to get the best that I can from that situation, and, yeah, move forward. I mean, that’s all I have to think of right now and that US Open is around the corner.

“Yeah, absolutely. Take maybe couple of days off, maybe watch the match a little bit more, see what I could have done better or things that I need to focus on, keep on working and, yeah, I mean, we start again in New York.”

Dimitrov hasn’t defeated Djokovic since Madrid in 2013 and this was one of their closest matches since then.

“I got him exactly where I wanted him to be, and he also, in those moments, he just kind of relaxed a little bit and he started going for more, because that’s his only chance to beat me. Everything went his way, to be honest,” admitted Dimitrov.

Meanwhile, Kyrgios hit out at officiating in Cincinnati, and complained about a lengthy toilet break Juan Martin del Potro took in their third round on Friday.

The 23-year-old Aussie, a runner-up here last year, fell 7-6 (4), 6-7 (6), 6-2 to Del Potro, who left the court for a nine-minute toilet break after he dropped the second set, which angered an already irritated Kyrgios, who had been arguing with umpire Adel Nour over an interruption made by a line judge during play.

After the match, Kyrgios posted, then deleted, a post on his Instagram story that, in his opinion, summed up his week in Cincinnati.

“Two point penalties. Horrendous umpiring. Crazy toilet breaks,” read the post.

His mother Norlaila Kyrgios also weighed in on the matter saying on Twitter: “Something as ordinary as a toilet break is a debatable topic at this level of tennis. Does the player really need to go, or is it a ruse to buy time, clear the mind and alter momentum? Coincidentally, it’s usually when someone loses a set.”

Kyrgios, who has been struggling with a hip issue and played both his matches in Cincinnati with both knees taped, is likely to drop from 18 to 30 in the world when the new rankings are released on Monday – his lowest ranking since February 2016.

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