Today, for the British public, the unthinkable happened. Just a year after his heroic triumph at SW19, Andy Murray was knocked out by the 23-year-old Grigor Dimitrov in the quarterfinals.
They may have feared the worst against the like of Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal, but many of the casual observers would not have seen his loss against the Bulgarian coming.
To people who follow the tour more closely, however, this has been coming for a while. Dimitrov has been the ‘emerging talent’ on the men’s tour for a number of years now and it seems he is beginning to reach his full potential.
Indeed the warning signs were there as he became the first man to win tournaments on three different surfaces in 2014 when he was victorious at Queen’s. For as long as it seems anyone can remember, tennis has been dominated by the ‘big four’ of Djokovic, Nadal, Federer and Murray.
However, in Dimitrov and the young Australian Nick Kyrgios, it would appear that we finally have a nouvelle vague of young players who are ready to challenge the top four’s dominance. Dimitrov’s performance level never dipped against Murray and Kyrgios demolished Nadal to prove that he has the consistency to challenge regularly at the top level.
Kyrgios and Dimitrov are both potential world number ones, and the next couple of years may just be the most competitive in recent memory as these new pretenders attempt to challenge the established generation of players before they ultimately fade away. There had been concerns about the future of tennis after this golden generation but it seems to be very much secure in the capable hands of Kyrgios and Dimitrov.
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