Andy Murray Triumphs Over Denis Shapovalov in Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

In a thrilling showdown at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, Andy Murray showcased his resilience by rallying from a set down to defeat Denis Shapovalov in a gripping encounter.

Despite facing adversity, Murray’s tenacity shone through as he clinched victory with a scoreline of 4-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 in the opening round of the tournament.

Andy Murray Triumphs Over Denis Shapovalov in Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

After Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, and Andre Agassi, Murray became the fifth male player in history to win 500 games on a hard court with that victory.
It’s not awful. For me, hard courts have proven to be an excellent surface over time. Five hundred matches is a big number. I’m really happy about that,” Murray remarked later.

Not many players have accomplished that. Reaching 500 before I’m done is fantastic.”

The 36-year-old, a tennis legend in Britain, believes his career will end in a few months.
It seemed like last week, after his Qatar Open second-round encounter, he had declared the game was no longer for him.
“People read a lot into what I say on the court sometimes and it’s not always rational,” Murray said.
“I still enjoy playing the game and competing. The older you get, the more difficult it is to compete with the younger guys. You need to maintain your physical fitness.”

He said: “It’s not easy, I probably don’t have too long left but I’ll do the best that I can these last few months.”


Murray gave the match a confident start by preventing the Canadian from winning a single point in the opening set.

Up until game nine, the Scotsman was looking good on the serve. Then, after Murray pushed the ball out to give Shapovalov two break points, he could only grin in frustration.

Shapovalov had a fantastic chance to convert the first one, but he dragged it wide with Murray out of position.
But he won the second when Murray shot a backhand that was just a bit too long following a lengthy rally.

In such a close race, Shapovalov’s breakthrough was significant. He won the opening set by staying near the net and tapping the ball over Murray, well beyond his reach, to end his subsequent service game.

After giving up the opening point of the second set with a backhand into the net, Murray went on to win four games in a row and make three good challenges. When he capitalized on the following game, he reached his first break point of the contest. However, the Canadian denied Murray any more opportunities by defending that and blazing serves down.


Andy Murray Triumphs Over Denis Shapovalov in Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

In the following, Murray found himself under siege from Shapovalov and had to save break points himself. He briefly spun around to poke the ball over the net, but he was unable to win the point.

Nevertheless, Murray held serve, and Shapovalov committed a double fault to send the second set’s fourth game to deuce. Murray took advantage of another double fault to win that game and the break.
However, the British player allowed Shapovalov to play in the following game and expressed his annoyance when Shapovalov’s serve broke right away.

Murray attempted to counterattack, but Shapolov leveled the set to maintain his lead.
Murray had some fantastic shots down the court, but Shapolov persistently tracked down rebounders.

Murray maintained his composure and held his serve. He won the opening mini-break and forced a tiebreak in the second set.
Unfazed, he took the tie-break 7-5 to take the second set and maintain his position in the contest. 

Murray broke Shapovalov’s serve in the opening game of the third set by exerting himself. In the decisive set, he held onto that advantage.

Shapovalov threw wild strokes out of bounds with increasing unpredictability, while Murray would sometimes hold his lower back as if in pain.
After Murray completed another crucial hold of serve and proceeded to bang his racket against the floor and then his own head, the Canadian became irate.

He reached match point with a brilliant backhand return past Shapovalov, and he went on to win it all.

Murray stated, “Both of us haven’t won too many matches lately and he missed a large part of last year,” after defeating Shapovalov.

“On these courts, he’s obviously played well here in the past and his serving is unbelievable and you need to try and get the balance right between just reacting to his big shots but not just trying to put balls in the court.”Although it wasn’t simple, I eventually completed the task.”

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