"I'm really way past that": Grigor Dimitrov opens up on being given baby Federer moniker at start of his career

Friday, 10 May 2024 at 23:00
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Grigor Dimitrov shared his thoughts on being called 'baby Federer' during the early years of his career. The Bulgarian, who will turn 33 on May 16, responded to an interview where he reflected on his beginnings on the ATP Tour, when he was dubbed 'Baby Fed' in comparison to the 20-times Grand Slam champion.
Dimitrov is experiencing a resurgence on the Tour following strong campaigns in the last months, including two Masters 1000 finals at the Paris Maris and Miami Open, the final at the Open 13 Provenze, and the title at the Brisbane International earlier this year, his first title in almost 7 years. His recent good results have propelled him back into the top 10.

"I really wanted to have my own name" - Grigor Dimitrov

Since his junior days, Dimitrov was known as Baby Fed due to his elegant shots and one-handed backhand resembling Federer's. The Bulgarian also shared the same sponsors as the Swiss, and expectations for him were sky-high. "It was flattering. At the same time, I’m really way past that,” he said.
“Even back in the day, I thought it was funny but at some point I was like: ‘I would like to establish myself as the tennis player I am, as the person I am.’ I think that was one of my goals to keep on going with it.”
"To be: ‘Ok, this is my day, this is my time to establish myself as this player that has nothing to do with anybody else.’ I think I did a great job with that and, honestly, I was very proud of that part in particular because I really wanted to have my own name."
Dimitrov is now world No. 10 and have a record 22-7 in 2024.
Dimitrov is now world No. 10 and have a record 22-7 in 2024.
“Back in the day, [reaching the top 10] was something that I had to prove,” he says. “After that, I had nothing to prove on that end. I have always been very hung up on running my own race, running my own pace and doing the things that I really want to do. The things that I really like. Now being back in the top 10, this is the result of the hard work we have all put in as a team,” Dimitrov added.

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