Impressive Matteo Berrettini ends Andy Murray’s Queen’s Club comeback
Andy Murray’s Queen’s Club comeback was ended in the second round by top seed Matteo Berrettini at the cinch Championships.
Murray, who won his first singles match on grass in three years on Tuesday, was overpowered 6-3, 6-3 by the world No 9.
Berrettini, a former US Open semi-finalist, was always going to be a tougher proposition than Murray’s first-round opponent, the lacklustre Frenchman Benoit Paire.
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The former world No 1’s movement certainly did not seem to be impaired by his recent groin problem, the latest in a long line of injury setbacks.
But 6ft 4in Italian Berrettini, with one title under his belt already this season, regularly boomed down serves of 140mph and secured a break for 3-2 when the Scot wafted a forehand long.
Murray faced two set points on his own serve and surrendered the second when he dumped a forehand low into the net.
The 34-year-old had a chance to claw back an early break in the second but was unable to take advantage as Berrettini moved 3-0 ahead.
And Murray’s bid to reach a seventh Queen’s Club quarter-final, and a first since he won the title in 2016, ended when Berrettini ruthlessly held to love.
So there will be no England v Scotland appetiser before the football on Friday, with Berrettini taking on British number one Dan Evans instead.
Evans earlier reached his first Queen’s quarter-final with a 6-4, 7-6 (9-7) victory over Frenchman Adrian Mannarino.
In doing so he joined Cameron Norrie and Jack Draper in the quarters, meaning three British players have reached the last eight at Queen’s for the first time in the Open era.
Evans looked in for an easy afternoon when he took the first eight points of the match but Mannarino, the world number 42, proved a tricky customer once he settled.
Evans needed a further break to take the first set and saved a set point in the second before winning a closely-fought tie-break.
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Evans said: “It was a tough match mentally more than anything, to try and hold on and hold my nerve at the end as well, I was down set point.
“I thought I did a good job of playing my game in the end and came up with some good serves when I needed them.”
Evans’ victory also meant three Britons have reached the quarter-finals of an ATP Tour event for the first time since Nottingham in 1996, when Tim Henman, Greg Rusedski and Mark Petchey got through.
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