Murray defeated by Djokovic

By for on
Andy Murray has been knocked out of the Sony Open in Miami, losing 7-5, 6-3 to Novak Djokovic in today's quarter-final match.

The quality of tennis in the first set was very high, but the end of the set was marred by a controversial call concerning a Djokovic volley. This call seemed to unsettle Murray and he was broken to lose the set. Although he reacted positively to go a break up in the second set, the defending champion couldn't maintain his advantage and back-to-back breaks for the world number 2 enabled him to serve out a straight sets win.

Both players served very well in the first set, and hit their groundstrokes with excellent depth. Murray was notably aggressive in his approach, hitting the ball precisely and with power. Djokovic had two opportunities to break in the fourth game but the Scot saved both with good play - the first with a powerful backhand down the line which forced the Serb's reply long and the second with a forehand crosscourt winner.

The set continued on serve with no further break point opportunities until 5-5 when two double faults from the Serb gave Murray a break point. But he missed a forehand into the net which levelled the score to deuce and good serving allowed the world number 2 to hold.

With Murray serving at 5-6 down, the controversial point involving the Djokovic volley occurred. The replay on the stadium big screen appeared to show the Serb making contact with the ball over the Scot's side of the net, but the umpire maintained that contact was made on Djokovic's side first. This seemed to affect Murray's concentration and he made two unforced errors to go down 0-40; Djokovic took the set after the Brit sent a crosscourt backhand long.

Despite the frustrating end to the first set, Murray maintained his aggressive play to start the second set. He broke for a 3-2 lead in a game where he outplayed his opponent at the net, breaking with a delightful volley that Djokovic was unable to reach. But the Serb showed his mental resilience by breaking straight back, and holding with ease.

Murray then played a poor service game with unforced errors seeing him fall to a 0-40 deficit; a long rally ended with the world number 6 sending a backhand into the net. Djokovic broke for 5-3 and then served out the match to love. Although Murray leaves Miami as a defeated player, today was arguably one of his best performances this season, especially in the first set, and is an encouraging sign for the upcoming months.

Murray will be in Davis Cup quarterfinal action next week when Great Britain take on Italy in Naples.
add comment | 61 comments
Thanks Katie. Fair and accurate once again
March 26, 2014, 10:45 PM
By angiebabez

Really enjoy your reports, Katie - thanks.
March 26, 2014, 10:46 PM
By Elly

Must have been tricky for you to write that, Katie.

Well done.. and very appropriate picture.
March 26, 2014, 11:03 PM
By scotnadian

Why is Djokovic playing the game if he doesn't know the rules?
March 26, 2014, 11:06 PM
By Grabcopy

^ This puzzled me also - you'd think after 20 years or so he'd have figured them out!
March 26, 2014, 11:26 PM
By wimbledonwestie

The call ruined the whole till then very high quality match. Damn.
March 27, 2014, 12:04 AM
By Coldmarek

Good report on a good match marred by the net incident.   Bad decision by the umpire but Novak could have owned up.    He must have known.   It looked like the whole face of the racquet was over the net.    I think he was a bit edgy just then and desperate for the point at the business end of the set.    Andy was probably thrown at being cheated by a so called friend.    That would be quite difficult to deal with.    
March 27, 2014, 12:14 AM
By Iluvandy

For the first time, I'll be rooting for Fed against Djokovic - he has shown his true colours as a cheater. Then again Fed is no better...

Really poor form from Novak but the umpire is a disgrace.
March 27, 2014, 12:21 AM
By syc23

I really don't think Djokovic will want to play Federer because Federer will be angry about blowing the Indian Wells title.
March 27, 2014, 12:23 AM
By Connor

I really don't think Djokovic will want to play Federer because Federer will be angry about blowing the Indian Wells title.

In my book they are both losers.   Neither worth supporting.   I suppose comms have to talk up their sport but I wish one of them would have the guts to call out any player who cheats.   
March 27, 2014, 12:35 AM
By Iluvandy

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