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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Thursday March 28, 2024

After his bid for the Sunshine Double died in Miami on Thursday night, Carlos Alcaraz had to give props to his opponent.

“He made me feel like I'm 13 years old,” Alcaraz said of Grigor Dimitrov’s breathtaking performance on Thursday, adding: “You know, it was crazy. I was talking to my team saying: ‘I don't know what I have to do. I don't know, you know, his weakness. I don't know anything.’

“That's why I have frustration right now, but, you know, in the thought of tennis, I left the court happy with my level.”

Upon hearing of the compliments paid to him, Dimitrov had some kind words for Alcaraz.

“Carlos is such – you know, I always call him like a firecracker,” said the former World No.3. “He's amazing. I love watching him play. Honestly, I love watching him playing, I love practicing against him, competing against him.

“I'm 12 years older than him. It's honestly a lot of fun for me to challenge myself. It's a great opportunity for me. But also, against him, you cannot really let him hit the ball. I think we saw what happened even when I was up a break in the second set [during] the game he broke me. It was straight up four forehands. Absolutely nothing I could have done.”

Dimitrov talked about the matchup, and added some insights, saying that he feels playing a unique talent like Alcaraz actually helps him stay sharp.

“For me, [Carlos is] one of the craftiest players out there,” he said. “Sometimes I can put myself in his shoes in certain moments and I can kind of guess, so to speak, what might come, but what might come, it's not like it will.

“But as I said, he's so explosive throughout the court, so you really need to put him in uncomfortable positions. I think sometimes you need to deliver that power yourself in order to be able to sustain his shots.”

“He's already such a complete player at such a young age,” he said. “You could see that he slows down the game, goes with the kick serve, great dropshots, coming into the net. So he's a very complete player already.

“At the same time, I like that type of a game because it also keeps me alert throughout the time, so maybe that's one thing I would say it's the closest to matching.”