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Last Updated: Monday, 14 January 2008, 06:47 GMT
Murray v Tsonga as it happened
Australian Open, Melbourne

Men's first round result

A MURRAY (GB) v J-W TSONGA (Fr)

5-7 4-6 6-0 6-7 (5-7)

ALL THE ACTION

By Chris Bevan

0647: So that's that then. Andy Murray's bid for the Australian Open title is over before it really began. A great match, and a worthy winner in Jo-Wilfried Tsonga - but you can't help but feel Muzza got his tactics wrong.

Sorry to be the bearer of more bad news but there is no other British interest in the singles either as, earlier on, Jamie Baker lost 6-4 6-4 6-7 (7-1) 6-4 to big-serving Croatian Ivo Karlovic.

"There wasn't enough aggression in Andy Murray's game. It will be a big disappointment for him but I still think he will be a top five player by the end of the year - he will learn from this."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 6-7 (5-7) Tsonga
It's all over, and Murray's dreams are in tatters.. Both players produce some barnstorming tennis in the tie-break, probing the corners of the courts and trying to open up their opponent. But a Murray double-fault means Tsonga has two serves for the match at 5-4 and he eventually wraps up victory thanks to a wild forehand from Murray.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 6-6 Tsonga
Tsonga couldn't serve for toffee in his last game - typically he doesn't put a foot wrong here and we have a tie-break for this fourth set.

"I just woke up expecting this to be finished, I'm glad in a way! Now I can watch the rest!"
Carl, Scotland on text 81111

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 6-5 Tsonga
Murray is in trouble on his serve at 0-30 - he's not going to put us through the mixer again is he? Not just yet, no. The Scot recovers to serve out and he is back in front. Tsonga reacts by asking for more medical attention to his troublesome thigh.

"I don't think it was just Tsonga's leg that was feeling it then."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 5-5 Tsonga
Tsonga just needs to hold his serve for victory - and he has been doing that with ease all day. Not this time though, some wild serves from the Frenchman hand Murray an unexpected lifeline and this match is still very much alive.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 4-5 Tsonga
Disaster. A wayward volley hands Tsonga two break points and, although Murray rescues himself with two big serves, a wayward lob means the Frenchman will serve for the match. Murray's angry action says it all.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 4-4 Tsonga
Still not much joy for Murray when it comes to returning Tsonga's first serve - he has been seeing it fly past him for over two hours now which must be a bit demoralising. No breaks either-way so far in this set.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 4-3 Tsonga
Murray is volleying as well as ever but a couple of wayward shots put him under pressure. The Scot reacts well to it though, and this set remains as close as ever.

So which way is this one going to go? Let me know your thoughts on the action by texting 81111 with the word TENNIS before your comment.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 3-3 Tsonga
The Tsonga serve is still solid as ever and he seems to have overcome those injury problems that affected him earlier. All-square in the fourth set, plenty to play for.

"I am not buying Tsonga's injury too much - and I am sure Murray isn't either."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 3-2 Tsonga
Murray seems to be growing in confidence but he is still having to work for every point - which is probably why he celebrates holding serve with a primeval howl. Nice.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 2-2 Tsonga
Tsonga is clearly struggling now and relying on his power to end rallies quickly. In contrast, Murray seems to have come alive and he is attacking Tsonga's serve with relish - we have not seen that before. The Frenchman holds serve but he is feeling the pressure.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 2-1 Tsonga
Talk about living dangerously - Tsonga has two break points that both go astray - and Murray is relieved to hold out. A break at this stage could be fatal for the Scot, but he survives.

"it looked like Tsonga cramped up in the back of his left thigh when he went to stretch. It is not hot here but I can't understand it if he is not fit."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 1-1 Tsonga
Tsonga is looking shaky on his left peg now - another reason for Murray to be cheerful. That doesn't stop our friend 'Ali' from banging out some more unreturnable serves to hold but he is not moving around the court quite so comfortably now. Floating like a butterfly? Hardly.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 1-0 Tsonga
Tsonga is still treating that Murray second serve with disdain but the Frenchman is full of errors at the moment and it is a seventh-straight game to celebrate for Muzza.

Murray 5-7 4-6 6-0 Tsonga
That's the third set for Murray and he is up and running at last after another break. Plenty of work still to be done though. Can he keep this comeback going?

Tsonga has asked for the trainer to work on a thigh strain on his left leg, so Murray will have a moment or two to collect his thoughts.

"Murray's got better but Tsonga has unravelled after going walkabout in his first service game - he is just waiting for the fourth set now."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 4-6 5-0 Tsonga
Another comfortable game for Muzza and the third set looks sewn up now after just 19 minutes of play. I have got a feeling Tsonga might not be so charitable in the fourth though...

Murray 5-7 4-6 4-0 Tsonga
More of the same please. It is all Murray so far in this third set and that formidable Tsonga serve is nowhere to be seen right now.

"Andy, if this goes to five sets, I'll personally hold you responsible for me failing my geography exam at 2!"
Tom, Newcastle on text 81111

Murray 5-7 4-6 3-0 Tsonga
This is better, much better. The recovery continues as Murray holds serve and it is Tsonga who is left to shake his head.

Murray 5-7 4-6 2-0 Tsonga
A tiny chink of light for Murray as the sloppy side of Tsonga's game shows its face for the first time. A clenched fist and a loud "C'MON!" have put a spring back in Murray's step. Maybe this one is not over yet...

Murray 5-7 4-6 1-0 Tsonga
Tsonga has a bathroom break and changes his shirt, he is in charge and is in no rush. Murray is trying to dig in and he holds his opening service game of the set - the first time he has managed that in this match. Muzza is still not firing on all cylinders though.

"If Murray could just get a good start in the third set then maybe Tsonga will start to miss. But at the moment, the Frenchman is immaculate.
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 4-6 Tsonga
Some more top class serving from Tsonga and the second set is his. It is looking grim for Murray now - I don't think the term 'uphill struggle' does his task justice here - any ideas how he can rescue this one?

"Murray has to change things around but that is easier said than done."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 4-5 Tsonga
Murray appeals for some help from the crowd and they respond with a rousing cheer. One of the Scot's entourage, Miles Maclagan, is looking on concerned at the Rod Laver Arena and he must be thinking how he can turn this one around. Murray holds, but Tsonga will serve for the second set.

Murray 5-7 3-5 Tsonga
Tsonga's serving stats speak for themselves - 90% of first serves have landed in during this second set. Some wild groundstrokes give Murray hope, however, but Tsonga saves two break points before holding out with a brilliant passing shot. His celebrations show just how important this game was - and a rare chance goes begging for Muzza.

Murray 5-7 3-4 Tsonga
Muzza is having more luck following his serve into the net than when he stays back - and a couple of good volleys see him hold serve a little easier than before. This has got to be the way ahead, but at the moment Murray seems a little unsure tactically so who knows what he will try.

Murray 5-7 2-4 Tsonga
The combination of Tsonga's serve and forehand is too hot to handle, no chance of a break for Muzza and he is running out of time if he is going to save this set.

"Murray went on court hoping Tsonga was going to miss rather than going for him. He has got to take more chances and make him hit shots he doesn't want to hit."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 2-3 Tsonga
Murray's first serve is going to be key to him keeping Tsonga quiet and it does not let him down here. Another service break would be disastrous though.

"This match is coming down to two main shots for Tsonga - his big serve and his forehand off Murray's serve."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 1-3 Tsonga
Murray is still happy to stay behind the baseline and it is still not doing him much good. Tsonga's serving is not giving him much of a chance to be fair but he needs to find a way back into this match.

"Why is Murray running around on the baseline? He's allowing Tsonga to drag him all over the place."
Martin, Glasgow on text 81111

Murray 5-7 1-2 Tsonga
Better serving from Muzza - he needs to dig in here and does. He seems to be coming out of his shell at last. About time too.

"Morning, Chris. Is Andy wearing a top today, or like all his press photos this week, is he topless?"
Tom, Aberystwyth on text 81111

I almost wish he was Tom. Muzza is actually sporting a blueish-grey top - and Tsonga's shirt is also mainly blue. Blue, in case you are somehow unaware, is also the colour of the courts at Melbourne Park - and the ballboys and ballgirls' outfits too. I think it is known as overkill.

Murray 5-7 0-2 Tsonga
Comfortable for Tsonga. That serve of his is unreturnable at times.

Murray 5-7 0-1 Tsonga
That's the first sighting of a glorious Murray two-handed backhand down the line - you don't return those. Tsonga is matching him shot for shot though, and another fantastic rally sees him run back to play a shot between his legs before recovering to arc home a brilliant winner.

This is top stuff which helps Tsonga break again, leaving Murray to shout "rubbish" at himself during the changeover. At the moment, sadly, he is right.

"Murray needs to up the ante and be a bit more aggressive at the start of this second set."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne

Murray 5-7 Tsonga
Some solid serving and that's the first set done and dusted for Tsonga after an hour of play - at the moment he is well in control. Murray must be feeling as blue as the garish new Plexicushion courts at Melbourne Park. Still a long way to go though...

"Andy, I have not stayed up all night just to watch you play middle-of-the-court wimpish returns my little sister could make. You're a Scot - pull it together."
Dan, Exeter on text 81111

"Tsonga has got it spot on so far. He has done his homework on Murray and is making sure he has control of the rallies from the start."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne.

Murray 5-6 Tsonga
Oh dear - back to square one. Murray's second serve is being eaten alive by Tsonga at the moment and a wild shot by the Scot gives the Frenchman two break points. An epic rally goes the way of the Frenchman and he will serve for the set once more.

Murray 5-5 Tsonga
Just what the doctor ordered - Murray's best game of the match so far gives him that vital break back at the best possible time. Old Muzza gives a shout of joy - and, thousands of miles away, so do I.

"I'm not asleep yet but maybe I should try...I have an exam tomorrow! Are they playing on a swimming pool? Maybe I'm just tired."
Faz, Bradford on text 81111

Murray 4-5 Tsonga
Even when Murray is serving he seems to retreat to a couple of feet behind the baseline - Tsonga in contrast is on the front foot trying to come forward - and attacking the ball. Only when he is facing a set point does Muzza venture forward and he recovers to hold out.

A close call but Tsonga will still serve for this first set.

Murray 3-5 Tsonga
If you didn't know already, you should be aware that Tsonga has a big serve. A VERY big serve. No chance for Andy and the Frenchman is within a whisker of the first set.

"Should really be in bed by now, but Murray is just too good to miss. COME ON ANDY!!"
Mark, Nottingham on text 81111

"You get the feeling that Tsonga is going to have to work very hard to close out this set."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne.

"Murray has a totally different attitude now to how he was when he was coached by Brad Gilbert. There is still a long way to go in this match."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne.

Murray 3-4 Tsonga
Murray's shot selection is still letting him down and he is inviting his opponent to hit him as hard as he likes. Hmmm, not a good idea when Tsonga is nicknamed 'Ali'. It's another battle for Murray to hold his serve but a wayward Tsonga forehand sees him do exactly that.

Murray 2-4 Tsonga
A scrappier game by Tsonga, who makes a couple of unforced errors for the first time, but he still has that big serve on his side and a first ace of the match restores his two-game advantage.

"Would a healthy crop of hair would help to shield Andy from the effects of the sun? Maybe its part of his Australian Open preparations"
Charlie, London on text 81111

Murray 2-3 Tsonga
Better from Murray, who has looked nervous in the early stages. His serve comes together at last and things are looking up.

He is on his own now as the only Brit in the singles draw. Jamie Baker went down, but not without a fight, losing 6-4 6-4 6-7 (1-7) 6-4 to Croatia's Ivo Karlovic.

Murray 1-3 Tsonga
Another lengthy game - both players are battling for every point. Tsonga is coming to the net whenever possible and that tactic is working well because Murray just cannot get his lobs right - they are either too short or too long right now, and the end result sees the Frenchman hold serve.

Bad news for fellow Brit Jamie Baker by the way. He has lost in four sets to Croatia's Ivo Karlovic. I will give you more details when I get them.

"Murray is looking like a mean Simon Amstell. The colour of the court is making my eyes water. 1000 words to go!"
Iain on text 81111

Iain had 3,000 words to write on 'The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe' at the start of Serena Williams' match - so at this rate he will be done by the end of Murray's first set.

"Murray is not doing enough with his groundstrokes. You cannot hope Tsonga is going to miss - at the moment he is controlling all the rallies and you cannot afford to mess around with him."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne.

Murray 1-2 Tsonga
Another tough game for Murray and this time Tsonga takes his chances to break. Both players are mixing their shots up and showing some subtle touches - neither of them are just about slamming it from the baseline - but Tsonga has the edge so far.

Murray 1-1 Tsonga
Another edgy game and Murray is feeling the heat already - not surprising with that barnet of his. Having sported big hair myself at various times, I know it does not mix well with the sort of sunshine we are getting at the Rod Laver Arena. Tsonga holds to level the match.

The only other Brit in singles action in Melbourne, qualifier Jamie Baker, is doing us proud. He is trailing big-serving Croatian Ivo Karlovic but has just won the third set. Latest score is Karlovic is leading 6-4 6-4 6-7 (1-7) 2-0. I will give you updates when I get them.

"C'mon McMurray son.Title is yours!."
Scotty on text 81111

Murray 1-0 Tsonga
Murray opens with an ace but the rest of the opening game is a lot edgier. Tsonga is producing some inspired shots but the Scot saves four break points and survives a nine-minute game to hold out. Phew!

Murray is not happy about the big screens at the Rod Laver Arena that mean he can see himself in action while he is playing the point. Might be a tad distracting that!

"I'm awake! Going on holiday tomorrow so no point going to bed! Amazing Jankovic game!"
Paul, from Southport on text 81111

0330: Here we go. Murray to serve first.

0325: News from the Vodafone Arena where third seed Jelena Jankovic has scraped through after a real ding-dong battle with 17-year-old Austrian Tamira Paszek. Paszek had three match points but Jankovic came through to edge an epic encounter 2-6 6-2 12-10. Phew!

0323: Murray loses the toss but Tsonga chooses to receive. The Frenchman is known for his big serve so it is a strange decision.

For those of you hungry for tennis action, you can also watch this match on BBC Two, while UK users can also see our super Scot in action on a stream on this website too.

"Tsonga needs to win three sets to beat Murray and I cannot see him doing that. He is dangerous but he will need to get a good start and players know now that Murray is tough to beat. This will be an interesting test for Murray and he may lose a set but I think he will get through."
BBC Sport's John Lloyd in Melbourne.

0322: Murray and Tsonga are introduced to the crowd at the Rod Laver Arena. There is a fair bit of support for Murray - that support could come in handy.

0320: It's a beautiful day in Melbourne, and the Rod Laver Arena is bathed in brilliant sunshine. It is not so sunny in Shepherds Bush so I need some company - let me know your thoughts on the action by texting 81111 with the word TENNIS before your comment.

0310: Anyone for tennis? Congratulations if you have stayed awake this long - Andy Murray's opening match of the Australian Open against unseeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga is just minutes away.



SEE ALSO
Aussie Open day one photos
14 Jan 08 |  Tennis
Australian Open order of play
12 Jan 08 |  Tennis
Tennis on the BBC
07 Jan 08 |  Tennis
Australian Open draw
11 Jan 08 |  Tennis


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