Battling Murray outlasts Edmund

By Michael Hincks

Last Updated: 02/08/18 12:28am

Andy Murray continued his comeback charge with a gruelling three-set victory over British No 1 Kyle Edmund in the Washington Open second round on Wednesday.

In just his fifth match of 2018, Murray – currently the world No 832 – outlasted his fellow Briton after two hours and 31 minutes on court, winning 7-6 (7-4) 1-6 6-4.

The three-time Grand Slam champion, playing his first hard-court tournament in 17 months, faces Marius Copil next in the third round.

The British pair locked horns only five weeks ago at Eastbourne, with Edmund recording a straight-sets win as Murray tested the waters ahead of Wimbledon.

Murray subsequently withdrew before the Grand Slam started, citing the prospect of five-set tennis as “too soon”, but the former world No 1 has his sights set on the US Open in August.

And after preparations for that major began with a demanding three-set win over Mackenzie McDonald on Monday, the 2012 US Open champion found himself up against a familiar opponent in Edmund, for whom he has been a mentor to during the 23-year-old’s rise up the rankings.

Andy Murray is playing his first hard-court tournament since Indian Wells last year Andy Murray is playing his first hard-court tournament since Indian Wells last year

Andy Murray is playing his first hard-court tournament since Indian Wells last year

An even first set saw Edmund break in the 11th game, but when serving for the set he was broken back by a fired-up Murray, who went on to clinch the tie-break 7-4 when a backhand clipped the line.

Edmund was playing his first match since the Wimbledon defeat to Novak Djokovic last month, but looked to have brushed off the cobwebs in the second set, breaking Murray in the fourth game and sixth games to take it 6-1.

Momentum continued to swing in the decider, and Edmund was forced to dig deep and save two break points before levelling up at 4-4.

However, his resolve ended there, with Murray proving the master could still cut it against the apprentice when breaking two games later with a cross-court backhand return to seal the match.

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