Tennis: Murray falls to Djokovic

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Andy Murray bowed out of the US Open after being beaten 7-6 (7-1) 6-7 (1-7) 6-2 6-4 by Novak Djokovic in a gruelling quarter-final encounter.
In a rematch of the 2012 final, Murray matched the world No 1 blow-for-blow during the opening two sets before beginning to tire in the third and fading away from there.
The British No 1 had his rival on the ropes on several occasions thanks to a venomous forehand but Djokovic withstood the assault and came on strong towards the end.
Djokovic eventually completed the win in 3 hours 32 minutes to reach the semi-final stage for the 18th time in 19 grand slams and eighth straight time at Flushing Meadows.
The contest began at 9.43pm local time in New York and the clock was well past 1am by the time it had finished.
Murray began perfectly with a break in the opening game but then dropped the next four games, only to fight back to level things up again.
Murray attempted to break again in the ninth game but Djokovic held on, winning an amazing 29-shot rally and piling the pressure on his opponent. Murray held twice to force a tie-break but made a poor start and never recovered.
Murray had never beaten Djokovic from a set down and the Serbian had never lost a match at Flushing Meadows from a set up, so the odds on a successful Murray comeback were long.
The Brit looked in serious trouble when he dropped serve meekly in the third game of the second set but after three more service breaks the pair were level again at 4-4.
Djokovic saved a set point at 5-6 to force a second tie-break, which had exactly the same pattern and scoreline as the first but the other way around.
Murray looked to have the momentum and began the third set brilliantly as his forehand continued to prove unstoppable, but he eased off slightly in the fourth game and Djokovic took full advantage to clinch another break.
He had two chances to break back but this time his forehand just missed its target and Djokovic broke again to wrap up the set.
Djokovic saved another break point in the opening game of the fourth set, with a visibly tired Murray looking a spent force after missing that chance.
He held serve relatively easily for the most part despite his back appearing to have tightened up, but came unstuck when serving to stay in the match as a string of errors gave the win to Djokovic.

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