Murray out of Australian Open despite battling display
Murray was beaten in five sets by Roberto Bautista Agut in the first round in Melbourne.
Andy Murray was beaten by Roberto Bautista Agut in the first round of the Australian Open in what could be the final match of his career.
The Scot was beaten 6-4 6-4 6-7 (5/7) 6-7 (4/7) 6-2 in a five-set match that saw Murray show his talent and determination but also the physical toll of his long-standing hip complaint.
Murray began brightly and had the first major opportunity to put his opponent under pressure in the eighth game, setting up break point but unable to take it.
In the following game, his forehand found the net to give Bautista Agut a break and the Spaniard then served out to take the set 5-4.
The second set followed a familiar pattern. Murray, showing obvious signs that his injury had limited his movement, forced two break points in the second game but again failed to take them. Bautista Agut broke in the fifth after capitalising on Murray's mistakes and he took the second set 6-4.
When Murray dropped serve to fall 2-1 behind in the third set, lesser heads may have dropped but the Scot bounced back immediately. A backhand down the line gave him a break of his own and pulled him back level.
He saved break point at 4-4 and he then earned set point, which he thought he had won before umpire Eva Asderaki-Moore overruled a second serve and was backed up by HawkEye. Bautista Agut held to force a tie-break and Murray started strongly, taking a 4-1 lead.
A mistake from the Spaniard gave Murray two set points and he took the second with a forehand, celebrating with a defiant roar.
Momentum was with the five-times finalist and when the fourth set went to a tie break he raced into a 6-1 lead. Bautista Agut saved three set points but Murray was not to be denied and took it 7-4 to set up a decisive fifth.
He immediately put pressure on in the first game of the deciding set but Bautista Agut held and then cruised into a commanding lead as the exertions apparently took their toll on Murray.
He looked to be struggling to hold back tears as he served at 1-5 but showed his determination one last time to save match point with an angled volley.
Bautista Agut served out to win 6-4 6-4 6-7 (5/7) 6-7 (4/7) 6-2 and progresses to the next round but all eyes were on Murray after what could be the final match of a glittering career.