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Murray finishes the week ranked 47th in the world having moved back inside the top 50 for the first time in four years with his semi-final win over Nick Kyrgios; the 35-year-old required treatment from his trainer twice in the third set
Last Updated: 13/06/22 4:09pm
Andy Murray missed out on his first grass-court title since winning Wimbledon in 2016 as he was beaten by Matteo Berrettini in the final of the Stuttgart Open on Sunday.
The former world number one suffered a 4-6 7-5 3-6 defeat to the Italian in what marked just his second-ever loss in 10 grass-court finals.
Perhaps the more pressing concern, however, was Murray requiring treatment from the physio on two occasions in the third set, with Queen’s and Wimbledon on the horizon.
Berrettini was playing in his first tournament since March due to a right hand injury that kept him out during the clay season.
Murray had picked up his first victory over a top-five player in more than five years when he stunned Stefanos Tsitsipas in the quarter-finals, before defeating Australian Nick Kyrgios to reach his 70th career final and 10th on grass.
He finishes the week ranked 47th in the world having moved back inside the top 50 for the first time since May 2018 with the win over Kyrgios in the semi-finals. Victory in the final would have seen him rise to 35th in the rankings.
Murray had the chance to win his first ATP Tour title since 2019 back in January, only to suffer a straight-sets defeat to Aslan Karatsev in the final of the Sydney Tennis Classic.
“I got some pain in my ab when I was serving. Not something I’ve had before. I’ll need to get it checked when I get home,” said Murray.
“Obviously I’ve played a lot of matches. This is the most matches I’ve played in two weeks since probably 2016. That’s a really long time. It’s probably normal that I would feel some stuff in my body but I don’t really know the severity of it.
“Hopefully it’s all right. Obviously some good wins, it was a good week, but not the way I wanted to finish the week. I felt like I was playing well enough to win and I got myself in a really good position going into the third set so a frustrating end to what was a good week.”
Berrettini edged a tight opening set 6-4 after Murray had failed to capitalise on four break points while trailing 2-1. The Scot then rescued three break points to hold in response but was unable to make up the ground.
The two were stride for stride for much of the second, both displaying signs of frustration at the sight of sloppy errors.
In what looked a crucial point of the match Murray saved three break points while at 4-4 to hold for the lead, only for Berrettini to hit back with a comfortable service game.
The pressure returned to the Italian shortly after though as Murray capped another hold with a backhand down the line for 6-5, before taking full advantage of three set points to send it to a decider.
Berrettini’s reply was an immediate break to begin the third, after which Murray was forced to take an official medical timeout while the physio looked at his left leg.
He was thankfully able to continue, but soon found himself trailing by two games as Berrettini reeled off a love hold to put himself in control.
There was further concern minutes later when Murray required more treatment upon falling 4-2 behind, the 35-year-old making it through a hold of serve thanks to two missed returns from Berrettini but struggling to veil the discomfort during the changeover.
In familiar Murray fashion he continued to fight however was unable to hold off Berrettini, who converted his second match point to finish things off.
“It’s been a incredible week here. I really enjoyed it. I’d like to congratulate Matteo and his team on a fantastic week,” said Murray in his on-court interview.
“He’s just come back from a surgery and it’s never easy. He played extremely well today and deserved the win. Finally, thank you to my team here and my team back home.”