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Last Updated: Saturday, 25 June, 2005, 18:43 GMT 19:43 UK
Brave Murray falls to Nalbandian
By Caroline Cheese
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

Andew Murray
Andy Murray's stirring Wimbledon run ended in heartbreak with a 6-7 (4-7) 1-6 6-0 6-4 6-1 loss to David Nalbandian on his Centre Court debut.

The 18-year-old wildcard looked set to cause another huge upset when he took a two-set lead but cramp and fatigue set in and Nalbandian pounced.

Murray had a break of serve in the fourth set but could not hold on and after losing it, received treatment.

The Scot fought valiantly in the decider but Nalbandian prevailed.

Murray looked inconsolable as he trudged off Centre Court to a huge ovation from the crowd, but the teenager did so having proved his world-class potential.

As he did in his victory over Radek Stepanek in the previous round, Murray matched a far more experienced player, ranked almost 300 places above him.

The support I got when I walked off Centre Court made me feel like I belonged there
Andy Murray

And had he taken one of three break-point opportunities at 4-4 in the fourth set, the Scot might be celebrating reaching the fourth round on his Wimbledon debut.

Murray took advantage of a string of uncharacteristic groundstroke errors from Nalbandian to edge the first set on a tiebreak.

In the second, Murray hit top form and completely outclassed the former Wimbledon finalist.

Nalbandian was unable to contend with the teenager's ability to vary the pace and spin on his groundstrokes and looked utterly dejected when Murray won the set 6-1.

A fired-up Murray punched the air and the crowd, including fellow Scot Sir Sean Connery and a host of Britain's Olympic medallists, rose to their feet and followed suit.

When a shell-shocked Nalbandian sent a woeful volley over the baseline to gift Murray a break point, an unlikely straight-sets win looked on the cards.

Nalbandian reacted by smashing his racket - and it seemed to inspire him.

He saw off the break point and sprung into life, racing into a 3-0 lead.

As it did in his defeat to Thomas Johansson at Queen's two weeks ago, fatigue suddenly set in and Murray simply gifted the set to his opponent, saving himself for a fourth-set assault.

Hitting his groundstrokes with the same assurance as he did in the first two sets, Murray broke to take a 2-1 lead and then held on in an epic fourth game to extend his lead.

But the fatigue returned and a combination of that and cramp eventually undid the teenager when he allowed Nalbandian to level at 4-4.

In a final stand, the teenager earned three break points in another gripping game, but Nalbandian survived and once he levelled the match, Murray's hopes diminished.

The Briton showed flashes of life in the final set, but Nalbandian's consistency and superior conditioning saw him through.

Nalbandian admitted he had been surprised by the quality of Murray's performance.

"You always think it will be tough but he played very well," he said.

"He surprised me a bit in the beginning but set by set I started to see his game a little better.

"He lost because of physical problems but he has plenty of time to work on his fitness."


WATCH AND LISTEN
Highglights: Wimbledon 2005 day six


Interview: Andy Murray


Interview: David Nalbandian



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