February 11, 2017 / 8:17 PM / 7 months ago

Home favourite Dimitrov sets up Goffin final in Sofia

FILE PHOTO - Tennis - Australian Open - Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia - early 28/1/17 Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov waves as he leaves the court, after losing to Spain's Rafael Nadal in their Men's singles semi-final match. REUTERS/Issei Kato

SOFIA (Reuters) - Local favourite Grigor Dimitrov brushed aside unseeded Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-1 6-3 on Saturday to set up a final clash against David Goffin at the Sofia Open.

The 25-year-old Dimitrov delighted Bulgarian fans with a barrage of sizzling winners, including some scorching passing shots. Dimitrov, who reached the Australian Open semi-finals last month, also fired down nine aces.

Basilashvili stunned top-seeded Dominic Thiem 6-4 6-4 on Thursday.

“I get excited, of course,” Dimitrov, who closed out the match in 63 minutes, said in a courtside interview. “I‘m happy but I have to stay focussed on the Sunday match.”

Goffin stayed calm to fend off defending champion Roberto Bautista Agut 5-7 6-4 7-6 after the Spaniard took a 3-1 lead in the third set.

The Belgian, ranked 11th in the world, prevailed in two hours and 44 minutes of hard-fought tennis, sealing victory with a big serve that the defending champion returned long.

Reporting by Angel Krasimirov, editing by Ed Osmond

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