Andy Murray suffers major blow to Wimbledon hopes with defeat at Queen’s

Andy Murray Suffers Major Blow To Wimbledon Hopes With Defeat At Queen’s
Andy Murray looks dejected, © PA Wire/PA Images
Share this article

By Andy Sims, PA

Andy Murray suffered a major blow to his Wimbledon hopes after falling to a first-round defeat at the cinch Championships.

The five-time Queen’s Club winner paid for an error-strewn, irritable performance as he slipped to a 6-3 6-1 loss against Alex De Minaur.


Murray had won 10 matches in a row in claiming back-to-back grass-court titles in Surbiton and Nottingham.

But Australian seventh seed De Minaur – the world number 18 – was a major step up in class and probably one of the trickiest first-round opponents Murray could have drawn.

The 24-year-old certainly knew his way around a grass court; he is a former Eastbourne champion and reached the fourth round at Wimbledon last year.


He was simply too strong for 36-year-old Murray, sending him spinning to a defeat which means, barring an unlikely raft of withdrawals, that he will not be seeded at Wimbledon next month.

Murray probably needed to reach the quarter-finals at least to have a chance of being one of the top 32 players at SW19, but now the two-time champion – currently ranked 38 – is at risk of facing one of the big guns in the early rounds.

“I knew I was pretty much either going to have to make a final here if I didn’t do well in Surbiton and Nottingham, or if I won both of those events, it was looking like at least a quarter-final to do it,” said Murray.


“I was aware of that before all of the matches that I played the last few weeks. I dealt with it fine the last two weeks. So, yeah, I don’t think it had any bearing on how I played today.”

Despite the setback, Murray believes he can still mix it with many of the seeded players at Wimbledon.


“Yeah, I think so,” he added. “You know, obviously grass, there are less players that are probably comfortable on the surface than the clay and the hard courts.

“You know, some of the seeded players are maybe not that comfortable on the grass, so there’s some draws that are better than others.”

Murray’s appearance in the singles may have been fleeting, but tournament organisers will at least be relieved he has opted to play doubles with British number one Cameron Norrie; they face Joe Salisbury and Rajeev Ram on Wednesday evening.

Andy Murray in action at the cinch Championships
Andy Murray (pictured) suffered a 6-3 6-1 loss against Alex De Minaur (Adam Davy/PA)

They were breathing a sigh of relief earlier on Tuesday when Carlos Alcaraz survived a scare.

The top seed and world number two insisted he can challenge on the grass this summer despite needing a third-set tie-break to beat French journeyman Arthur Rinderknech.

The 20-year-old was playing only his seventh match on the surface, and his first outside of Wimbledon.

Lucky loser Rinderknech only found out he was playing the Spaniard shortly before midday after fellow Frenchman Arthur Fils, Alcaraz’s scheduled opponent, withdrew from the tournament.

But the 27-year-old almost knocked the headline act out, taking the first set and giving Alcaraz an uncomfortable afternoon before going down 4-6 7-5 7-6 (3) in just over two-and-a-half hours.

Alcaraz, the US Open champion who was playing his first match since losing to Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals at Roland Garros, said: “It has been a really tough match, he has played four or five matches on the grass and this was my first one.

“It was really difficult to adapt my game to the grass. For me it’s tough to play here, but Queen’s is a tournament I really wanted to play.

“I couldn’t play tennis on grass at home but I practised the movement on grass. I practised here a little bit before the tournament and I felt really good, even though it was the first match.

“I would say I’m going to be better in the next round.”

Britain’s Liam Broady was denied a notable win after world number 46 Adrian Mannarino came from a set down to win in three.

Broady, ranked 97 places behind the Frenchman at 143, raced away with the first set but was pegged back in a 1-6 6-4 6-3 defeat.

Fellow Brit Ryan Peniston – who beat Ugo Humbert on Monday – will face second seed Holger Rune in round two after the Danish youngster won 7-6 (4) 7-6 (3) against Maxime Cressy for his first career victory on grass.

Read More

Message submitting... Thank you for waiting.

Want us to email you top stories each lunch time?

Download our Apps
© 2024, developed by Square1 and powered by