Sinner Ruthlessly Dispatches Murray In Dubai

  • Posted: Feb 23, 2022

Sinner Ruthlessly Dispatches Murray In Dubai

Italian next faces fifth seed Hurkacz

Jannik Sinner earned his first victory over former World No. 1 Andy Murray on Wednesday at the Dubai Duty Free Championships, overcoming the Scot 7-5, 6-2 to reach the quarter-finals.

The Italian survived by the skin of his teeth in the first round at the ATP 500 event Tuesday, saving three match points against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina en route to advancing.

However, the World No. 10 found the going easier against Murray, not facing a break point as he struck his flat, powerful groundstrokes with depth and accuracy to outmanoeuvre the 34-year-old, triumphing after one hour and 44 minutes.

“It is a special feeling [to share the court with Murray],” Sinner said in his on-court interview. “He is a legend. Winning three Grand Slams, many, many tournaments and he has had some unfortunate moments with surgeries. His fighting spirit is incredible.”

Sinner captured four tour-level titles in 2021 and made his debut at the Nitto ATP Finals on home soil in Turin as an alternate. The 20-year-old is aiming to win his maiden trophy of the season this week in his third tournament of the season. The fourth seed advanced to the last eight at the Australian Open and went 3-0 at ATP Cup in January.

“There were some nerves,” Sinner said. “I lost my last match against him. I tried to stay focused about my game and it worked. Thanks for the support as always. I think I played well, especially in the first set when it was tight in some moments.”


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In a dominant performance, Sinner caused Murray problems with his consistent depth. He looked to force the Scot wide with his backhand and closed the net effectively throughout, striking volleys away into the open court as he latched onto Murray’s lofty slice backhands.

After a close first set, where Sinner remained patient, the Italian quickly raced clear in the second set to level their ATP Head2Head series at 1-1. The World No. 10, who enjoyed a run to the quarter-finals in Dubai last year, will next play fifth seed Hubert Hurkacz after the Pole moved past lucky loser Alex Molcan 6-3, 6-2 in 71 minutes.

Murray lifted the trophy in Dubai in his last appearance in 2017 and was seeking his 700th tour-level career win. Murray defeated Sinner in Stockholm in November.

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