Dubai tournament | Denis Shapovalov loses in the first round to Andy Murray

(Dubai, United Arab Emirates) Ontarian Denis Shapovalov lost 4-6, 7-6 (5), 6-3 to Briton Andy Murray in the first round of the men’s tennis tournament in Dubai on Monday morning.

Shapovalov, who is at 120e rank in the ATP world rankings, is 1-6 in singles so far this year. His only victory came against Frenchman Hugo Gaston in the first round of the Montpellier tournament last month. He gave up after a marathon of two hours and 32 minutes of play.

Murray will face the winner of the match between Frenchmen Gaël Monfils and Ugo Humbert, fifth seed in the tournament, in the second round. Murray, 67e world racket, now boasts a 2-1 career record against the 24-year-old Canadian.


Andy Murray

After starting the match with a bang, Shapovalov found himself in trouble in the second set. Murray particularly stood out in the backfield. The 36-year-old veteran, who has been slowed down by numerous hip operations in recent years, then relied on his excellent first service ball in the third set to come from behind and seal the outcome of the match.

Murray, who has won three career Grand Slam titles, posted a success rate with his first ball of 69% during the match, compared to only 56% for his opponent. He also won 53% of his points with his second ball, compared to barely 47% for the Canadian.

Shapovalov nevertheless finished the match with a 15-3 advantage in aces, but he was also outscored 10-1 in double faults.

The representative of the maple leaf was also less opportunistic in the crucial moments of the match. He only converted two of his six break points, while Murray recorded three breaks in six opportunities during the duel. His last break point of the match allowed him to seal the outcome of the match.

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