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Bulgaria's Dimitrov Scoops Title at Brisbane International

Dimitrov's title run in Brisbane included three consecutive Top 10 scalps: Dominic Thiem in the quarter-finals, top seed Milos Raonic in the semis and Nishikori in the final.

The world number five won their first meeting in straight sets in the first round of the Shanghai Masters in 2013, 6-3, 6-4, and he followed this up with another straight-set win in the third round of the Miami Open in 2014 with a closer 7-6 (1), 7-5 scoreline.

The Japanese star started well and had Dimitrov struggling to hold his opening service game, but from then on the Bulgarian dominated the first set, breaking Nishikori twice to take the opener in 36 minutes.

As a result of the win, Pliskova will leapfrog Dominika Cibulkova to become world number five when the next rankings are released on Monday.

Sunday's final will be the 10th of his career as he targets a fifth ATP World Tour title.

The hype is already building around new Brisbane International champion Grigor Dimitrov but the Bulgarian is determined to keep a clear mind in the lead-up to the Australian Open.




A forehand into the net and an overblown backhand from Nishikori gave Dimitrov the chance for the break and, seconds later, he was serving for the match. With a win over the Japanese Nishikori in the final, the 25-year-old's drought - which lasted more than two years - has finally come to an end. "I have lot of respect for him and it's always a pleasure playing against him". I don't remember the last time I felt that good on and off the court'.

"She was the better player today and for sure deserved to win the title", Riske said.

The early exits of Serena and Venus Williams and Caroline Wozniacki meant the tournament had lost much of its fizz and the final was left to two players ranked 47th and 61st in the world. Dimitrov certainly needed that victory over Raonic to prove naysayers wrong that he still has the credentials to get the big wins over the top players, and still be a contender for the big titles. If you think about it, it's just brutal.

"I feel very good about it", he said.

"I didn't miss nearly whole set in the first set", Pliskova said.

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