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It looks like the cover had a textured finish (i.e. plain plastic with a 'grooved' surface).
Another way to work around this would be to sand it using 600-800 wet & dry, but the method you've used will achieve a similar result after a few coats of primer have been applied & sanded down to fill these grooves.
Were you able to do anything with the dent whilst you had the door card off?
This job should never be complete - the day I think I've done it all, is the day I resign.
Currently in VelSatisfied's garage:
2005 FIAT Ducato 2.8JTD LWB Gran Volume, 2000 Kawasaki ZZR 1100 D7 'fullpower' in black + full GIVI & KAPPA luggage, 2007 MB R-Class 320 CDi Sport LWB uprated by Brabus to 300Bhp don't know if there's a 155mph limiter - will be fun finding out! 2004 Mercedes Vaneo 1.7 CDi Ambiente 7-seater