Andy Murray shot down by hard-hitting Serb in first-round exit at Miami Open
Andy Murray suffered a crushing first-round exit at the Miami Open with a straight-sets defeat to Dusan Lajovic.
Murray, a two-time winner in Miami, made a series of unforced errors as Lajovic secured a 6-4 7-5 win in one hour and 36 minutes.
The 35-year-old Scot, who last week lost to fellow Brit Jack Draper in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, had break points in the fourth and sixth games of the opening set.
But it was Lajovic, ranked 76 in the world, who struck first by breaking Murray to love in the seventh game before going on to take the opening set in 42 minutes.
The two men continued to trade blows in the second set, and again it was Lajovic who made the opening move when he secured a break in the ninth game to leave him serving for the match.
But with the game tied at 30-30, Lajovic produced his first double fault of the set to allow Murray the opportunity to break back instantly which he grabbed with both hands.
However, a scrappy game followed for an off-colour Murray, with Lajovic prospering to break the former world number one, and have another go at moving into the next round.
And the Serb made no mistake as he saw off a forlorn Murray to secure a second-round date with Maxime Cressy.
“Some days you don’t hit the ball your best but my movement (also) wasn’t quite there,” said Murray.
“I’ve been practising pretty well. It’s a very different court, very bouncy and much faster than last week (in Indian Wells), very different to the practice courts and…I just struggled a bit.”
Lajovic was happy that he was able to find a way to keep Murray under pressure.
“I was able to hustle and get to the deuce at 5-5, and I think he felt the pressure,” said Lajovic.
“This last game I felt super-tight, too. When I was 40-0 up and I missed some first serves he was able to put pressure on, but luckily he missed a shot that he doesn’t normally miss.
“I played a good match and I was very solid on my serving games. When I was able to play more aggressively in his service games I was able to take my chances.”
On a day of exits for British players in Miami – following Emma Raducanu’s earlier defeat – Kyle Edmund also lost.
The former British number one, back in action for the first time since the Australian Open following a series of injury problems, suffered a 7-5 7-5 defeat to China’s Yibing Wu in one hour and 35 minutes.
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