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Murray crashes out

James Jose / 28 December 2012

A misfiring forehand. That bluntly sums up Andy Murray on Thursday. The Scot looked nowhere near the man who won his maiden Grand Slam title the US Open and the Olympics gold medal.

A highly charged Janko Tipsarevic put out an error-littered Murray in straight sets 6-3, 6-4 in the opening game of the Mubadala World Tennis Championship at the Abu Dhabi International Tennis Complex.

The World No.9 was right on top of his game as he completed the demolition of the World No.3 in an hour and 24 minutes. Tipsarevic had a break each in both sets as he completed a fine win.

The Serb will take on Rafael Nadal’s replacement World No.11 Nicolas Almagro of Spain in the semifinal on Friday.

In the second game of the night, David Ferrer avenged Spain’s Davis Cup final loss by defeating Tomas Berdych in straight sets. World No.5 Ferrer won 6-2, 6-4 over the World No.6.

Janko Tipsarevic and David Ferrer on their way to victories on Thursday. — KT photos by Shoaib Anwer

Ferrer faces World No.1 Novak Djokovic in the second semifinal on Friday. Ferrer gets the chance for revenge after Djokovic had defeated him in the final last year. 

“I feel great. Not every day you get a chance to beat a Grand Slam winner and Olympic gold medallist. I know it is an exhibition match. But I promise you all the six of us are competing in the tournament seriously because this situation might happen next week in Doha or Chennai or even in Australia. I think there is no easy match. I wasn’t expecting anything. But Murray has a lot of confidence being the Grand Slam winner and Olympic medallist. But this win gives me a small confidence for my next match,” Tipsarevic said after the match.

Tipsarevic had lived up to that promise as Murray’s game faltered on the night. Though there were patches of brilliance, those glaring errors, especially a misfiring forehand stood out.

Tipsarevic had three break points in the fourth game of the first set and he converted that with ease.

Murray tried to have a look in, in the seventh game when it went to deuce twice. But Tipsarevic unleashed an ace. Murray’s otherwise misfiring forehand helped him pull it back to deuce as he sent a beautiful forehand down the line. But Tipsarevic warded off the danger as Murray netted his backhand.

Tipsarevic was again taken the distance in the ninth game as Murray tried to stay in the first set. Tipsarevic could have closed it out when he had one set point but Murray managed to take it to deuce. Murray had a chance to break Tipsarevic twice but the latter averted it and wrapped it up on his second set point as Muray sent his double-handed backhand long.

It was nightmarish start to the second set for Murray as he was broken in the very first game, despite starting with an ace and following it up with another ace as looked set to hold serve at 40-15. But Murray netted two forehands to give Tipsarevic a sneak peek. Murray then netted his forehand again to hand the game to Tipsarevic.

It went on serves and Tipsarevic closed out the set and the match at 6-4. Murray had six aces as compared to Tipsarevic’s three but those misfiring forehands spelt the end for him.


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