What if the 2024 season marked the big return of “Baby Fed”? The Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov dominated the Dane Holger Rune (8th in the world) in the final of the ATP 250 tournament in Brisbane, Sunday January 7, after a particularly close match (7-6, 6-4).

The number 2 seed (14th player in the world) beat his younger brother (20 years old), number 1 seed, and thus gets his season off to a perfect start. Above all, the 32-year-old confirms his current form after having signed a thunderous end to the 2023 season: semi-finals at the Masters 1000 in Shanghai, then final at that of Paris. He promises to be one of the outsiders to watch at the Australian Open, the first Grand Slam tournament of the season, which starts on January 14.

Often compared since his debut on the professional circuit to Roger Federer, from whom he has never hidden his stylistic inspiration, Dimitrov displayed his range of shots on Sunday, starting with his one-handed backhand. After a first set where the two players had to take turns saving break points, the decisive game quickly turned to the advantage of the elder.

In the second set, Dimitrov, more solid and more inspired than his tempestuous rival, had to do it four times to finally succeed in seizing his serve at 4-3. The Bulgarian was never again worried about the game. Rune saved the first two match points, before collapsing on the third. Dimitrov also collapsed, literally, overcome by emotion.

With this victory in the antipodes, the Bulgarian offers himself the 9th title of his career and puts an end to a drought of more than six years. His last trophy dates back to the end-of-year Masters (which brings together the eight best players of the season), at the end of 2017.