Dimitrov aims to keep it simple going into Australian Open

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[January 13, 2017]  (Reuters) - Grigor Dimitrov has worked on simplifying his game and said he feels better prepared for the Australian Open next week after ending a two-and-a-half year trophy drought in Brisbane.

Dimitrov, who slipped to 40 in the rankings last July before climbing back to 17, said he now has experience on his side ahead of the first grand slam event of the calendar year.

"The last year or two helped me a lot to learn and see what works for me: what kind of practices, what kind of fitness regime, what kind of food regime, what I need on and off the court," he told The Telegraph.

The Bulgarian player, often compared with former world number one Roger Federer for his wide-range of shots, said he is practicing to maintain a level of consistency for longer phases.

"It's a blessing and a curse at the same time to have too many tools in your bag," Dimitrov added.

"But we've been practicing to simplify the game as much as possible. I've said that before in previous years, but I was never able to sustain it for a long period of time."

The 25-year-old defeated Kei Nishikori 6-2 2-6 6-3 in the final at Brisbane International at the weekend, securing his first win over the Japanese player in four attempts.

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Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov hits a shot during a training session ahead of the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne, Australia, January 13, 2017. REUTERS/David Gray

 Dimitrov, who is seeded 15th ahead of his seventh appearance at the Melbourne Park, will face 22-year-old Christopher O'Connell in the first round next week.

(Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Alexander Smith)

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