A day after Australian Open champion Roger Federer was
surprisingly beaten in the second round, world number one Murray
found himself a point away - time and time again - from
following the Swiss great through the exit door.
But number one seed Murray showed the resilience that carried
him to the top of the tennis rankings last November as he
inflicted a heartbreaking loss on Kohlschreiber.
The Briton finally bagged the second set tiebreak on his eighth
set point to level the match. The ATP said no men's tour-level
match has featured a tiebreak with more than 38 points since
1991 - six have finished 20-18.
"I've never played a tiebreak like that ever, not in juniors,
nothing has been close to that," Murray, who is contesting his
first tournament since losing in the fourth round of the
Australian Open in January, told reporters.
"I'll probably never play another one like that again. I've been
playing on the tour for 11, 12 years now and nothing, nothing's
been close to that."
With no end to the tiebreak in sight, Murray, Kohlschreiber and
the umpire were left confused as the players forgot to change
ends when they were locked at 15-15. Tennis rules state players
have to change ends every six points during a tiebreak.
"I realised at 16-16 (that we had not changed ends), the umpire
said he forgot and the (scoring) machine didn't recognise it, I
do not know if the machines are made to go that high, it doesn't
happen every often," added Murray.
The tiebreak left Kohlschreiber running on empty in the third
set and Murray needed just another 30 minutes to secure a
meeting with seventh-seeded Frenchman Lucas Pouille, who beat
Federer's Russian conqueror Evgeny Donskoy 6-4 5-7 7-6(2).
"I could have easily lost tonight, but the way I played when I
was behind will give me a lot of confidence after what was a
tough start to the year," said Murray. "I want to keep that
going now. It was a special match to win because of how it
The other semi-final will feature Fernando Verdasco of Spain and
Dutchman Robin Haase, both unseeded.
(Reporting by Pritha Sarkar, editing by John Stonestreet)
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