By Niall Clarke
- Grigor Dimitrov defeats Andy Murray (1)6-7, 6-4, 6-3
- Murray was a break up in the final set
- It’s the second straight early exit for Murray
MIAMI, USA- Andy Murray is out of the Miami Open after squandering a final set lead in a three set defeat to Grigor Dimitrov.
The British number one led by a break in the decider after the two players the exchanged the opening two sets. Dimitrov however reeled off five straight games to take the match after two hours and 27 minutes.
It is Murray’s second straight early exit after another lead squandering defeat to Federico Delbonis in Indian Wells. The world umber two has shown worrying form since the birth of his first child after the Australian Open.
Novak Djokovic is now the only remaining top four seed left in the tournament after Roger Federer’s illness and Stan Wawrinka’s early exit preceded Murray’s disappointing defeat/
It all looked good for the Brit in the early goings. Murray earned a break in the third game of the match, but in what would become a usual theme, he would throw away his advantage in the following game. The set remained on serve with neither player able to force another break point opportunity, however Murray took ownership of the tiebreak with a comfortable 7-1 victory.
The fightback for Dimitrov started right away in the second set. The Bulgarian raced into a 4-0 lead with two love breaks of the Murray serve. The Brit looked visibly frustrated and fought to get one break back. However, despite facing break points, Dimitrov managed to serve out the set 6-4.
Murray was not at his best form, but he managed to find a break in the final set which was in lrge part a gift from his opponent. Suddenly the sense of urgency creeped in and Dimitrov upped his level to not only break back, but take the lead in the set with another break of serve. A depleted Murray was forced to serve to stay in the match, but Dimitrov was firmly in control and rounded off a big victory with a third straight break.
Another disappointing performance from Murray who will see his final points from last year stripped from his total
from the past year. It is further good news for Djokovic, who on top of seeing his main rivals bow out early, will likely extend his lead at the top of the ATP world rankings.
After a disappointing follow up to a great 2014, Dimitrov showed signs of getting back on track. This win could serve ashuge confidence booster for the talented Bulgarian. He will face either Gael Monfils or Pablo Cuevas in the next round.
Next up for Murray it is on to the clay season. It is the surface that has traditionally been the weakest for the world number two but his results last year showed a change in fortunes on the dirt.
The Miami Open continues on Tuesday
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