Murray and Evans bow out in third round
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Andy Murray and Dan Evans exited The Championships, Wimbledon following difficult third round clashes against two promising young talents.
Murray’s inspiring Wimbledon run came to an end at the hands of Canadian 10th seed Denis Shapovalov who beat the two-time champion 6-4, 6-2, 6-2.
The former World No.1’s loss followed Evans’ exit to Sebastian Korda earlier in the day with the American prospect overcoming the 22nd seed 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4.
With many doubts surrounding Murray’s fitness coming into The Championships there were plenty of positives to take for the 34-year-old who will leave SW19 with his head held high.
After two exhausting encounters to reach the third round, Murray had spent nearly eight hours on Centre Court before today’s match, it proved to be one step too far as he was outplayed by the World No.12.
Shapovalov raced to a 5-1 lead in the first set, breaking Murray twice, but in his best spell of the match the Brit won eight points in a row to break back and shift the momentum, taking the first set back to 5-4.
The young Canadian appeared to be rattled as he served out for the set for a second time, and although Murray had three more break points he was unable to peg his opponent back – with Shapovalov instead sealing the opener 6-4 and letting out a huge roar on Centre Court.
Full of confidence Shapovalov re-asserted his control in the first game of the second set – a Murray double fault handing him an early break.
Struggling for confidence Murray again found himself a double break down with Shapovalov capitalising on several loose shots from the former World No.1.
Although Murray had the chance to get back into the set at 30-15 up on the Shapovalov serve, the 22-year-old extinguished any hopes with an outstanding kick serve ace on second serve, before going on to hold and go 4-0 ahead.
But Murray dug deep and after his first hold of serve in the set he had five break points of his own in the next game – it was only after a lengthy hold that Shapovalov re-composed himself and went on to win the set 6-2.
As the roof closed on Centre Court, Murray had time to gather his thoughts but still found himself with a mountain to climb. Shapovalov raced to 40-0 up on Murray’s first service game of the final set, which quickly turned into another break – his fifth of the match.
When the Canadian broke Murray again to go 3-0 ahead there was no coming back and in the end Shapovalov wrapped up the match in two and a half hours.
British No.1 Evans was beaten by the promising Korda 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in an entertaining third round clash on Centre Court.
Evans, who was looking to reach the fourth round at SW19 for the first time in his career, was unable to match the power and precision of his opponent who became just the fifth debutant to reach the round of 16 at the All England Club in the last decade.
Korda, ranked 50th in the world heading into the tournament, found himself struggling to take advantage on Evans' second serves early on in the match and was able to withstand the Brit's sliced backhand and keep the match tight early on.
The 6ft 5in American claimed a key break to go 4-3 up and went on to clinch the opening set with a thumping volleyed winner.
The 20-year-old didn’t have it all his own way, three rare mistakes saw Evans break at 4-2 in the second set, and the 31-year-old Brit showed his experience to seal his advantage and level the match at one set apiece.
Korda edged ahead 4-2 with a break in the third set, only for Evans to respond immediately by converting his fourth break point in a game that lasted 13 minutes and went to deuce on six occasions.
But in the end the quality of Korda shown through – and he would match anything Evans could throw at him as he rallied to win the third set 6-3, and take the last set 6-4, as he ended the Brit’s run at Wimbledon for another year.
“It’s disappointing really,” Evans said. “It’s an amazing court to play on, great atmosphere, but I didn’t get my game on the court.
“All credit to him, he played some strong tennis. He’s obviously going to be a very good player. So it was not a great day.
“I’m massively appreciative of the All England Club for putting me on Centre. It would have been easy to put me on Court One or whatever other court. I really enjoyed the atmosphere. It was great.
“I didn’t feel any more pressure because I was playing on Centre. He probably played the better tennis today, was a bit more aggressive than me. That was the difference.”
There were plenty of positives for the Brits on Friday June 2, with a number of players in doubles action. Those winning today included…
- Jamie Murray & Bruno Soares beat Nicholas Monroe & Vasek Popisil 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-1
- Aidan McHugh & Alastair Gray beat Roman Jebavy & Jiri Vesely 7-6(1), 6-3
- Joe Salisbury & Rajeev Ram beat Laslo Dere & Gianluca Mager 6-1, 6-2
- Cam Norrie & Jaume Munar beat Petros Tsitsipas & Stefanos Tsitsipas 7-5, 7-6(5)
- Jeremy Chardy & Naomi Broady beat Ryan Peniston & Eden Silva 6-4, 6-2
- Sam Murray Sharan & Divij Sharan beat Ariel Behar & Galina Voskoboeva 6-3, 5-7, 6-4
- Joe Salisbury & Harriet Dart beat Henri Kontinen & Heather Watson 6-1, 7-6(3)