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Tennis-Tsitsipas ends Murray’s hopes with comeback win

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LONDON (Reuters) -Stefanos Tsitsipas fought off Andy Murray to silence a partisan Centre Court crowd with a superb 7-6(3) 6-7(2) 4-6 7-6(3) 6-4 victory in a gripping Wimbledon second-round match on Friday.

The 24-year-old Greek trailed by two sets to one after twice Wimbledon champion Murray edged ahead in three tight sets on Thursday night before Wimbledon’s curfew halted play mid-battle.

As the match resumed in sparkling sunshine on Friday, fifth seed Tsitsipas showed incredible composure to edge a tense fourth set on a tiebreak after both players had been rock solid on serve, as they had been throughout the contest.

The 36-year-old Murray, who has not reached the fourth round at a Grand Slam since 2017 and underwent hip-resurfacing surgery in 2019, finally began to look weary in the fifth.

Errors began to come from his racket and Tsitsipas sensed his moment with a break in the third game — the first time he had taken Murray’s serve in the match.

Tsitsipas forged 5-3 ahead but Murray hung in to test the Greek’s nerve.

Two match points went begging but at the third time of asking an ace ended Murray’s dream.

Tsitsipas, who also needed five sets to beat Austrian Dominic Thiem in a rain-hit first-round clash, will face Serbia’s 60th-ranked Laslo Djere next as he eyes a deep run having only once reached the last 16 in 2018.

“It’s never easy against Andy. Everyone loves him here. It was a very difficult game and I’m impressed how well he holds up after his hip surgeries and his level today,” Tsitsipas said.

“It was nerve-racking. It was an obstacle and it’s extra difficult when you’ve grown up watching him play on this court.”

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Ken Ferris and Ed Osmond)

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