Rublev eases past Murray to win Abu Dhabi exhibition event | Tennis News – Times of India
Both players held their opening two service games but Rublev edged ahead when he broke Murray in the fifth game after a series of fiercely-fought rallies from the back of the court.
The 24-year-old Russian ran Murray ragged with his powerful groundstrokes but the Briton managed to hold on before Rublev’s pressure paid off and he took the set with a stunning forehand down the line.
The 34-year-old Murray, a former world number one and three-times Grand Slam champion, got off to a poor start in the second set when he lost serve in the first game before fighting back to force a tiebreaker which Rublev dominated to clinch victory.
“I got three good matches here… Andrey played really well today. He’s got a really big game… I just need to find a way to turn some of these matches against these top players around,” said Murray.
Earlier, 20-times major winner Rafael Nadal fell to a second consecutive defeat on his comeback from a foot injury when he lost 6-7(4), 6-3, 10-6 to Canada’s Denis Shapovalov in the match to decide third place.
Spaniard Nadal, making his first tournament appearance since the Washington Open in August, edged a close tiebreak in the opening set but struggled with his timing as Shapovalov found his range and closed out the win.
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