Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 25 October 2014

Murray fails in grand slam bid

Andy Murray was defeated by three sets to one by Novak Djokovic in the Australia Open final - his third grand slam final in a row (AP)

Andy Murray's attempt to win back-to-back grand slam titles ended in disappointment after he lost to Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open final.

The British number one went down by three sets to one, with the Serbian making history as the first man in the Open era to win three successive titles in Melbourne.

However, fans in Murray's hometown of Dunblane in Perthshire who gathered together to watch the encounter said they would support him "no matter what".

The 25-year-old Scot was gracious in defeat, saying on court: "Firstly obviously, I'd like to congratulate Novak. His record here is incredible. I'd also like to thank my team. They've done a great job with me and they help me all the time.

"I'd also like to thank the whole crowd, there's such a great atmosphere to play in and you're all very fair, so thank you very much." He added: "I'll see you guys next year. Thank you."

Back in Scotland, Murray's grandfather Roy Erskine praised the quality on display from Djokovic. "There's always disappointment when you get a result in a big match like that," he said.

"The quality of Djokovic's last two sets was just unbelievable. How well he played after he won the second set to break up his game. His service improved and he wasn't missing. I don't think we were too upset about the end result."

Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond said: "This was Andy's third grand slam final in a row and I have no doubt he has many more to come. Andy played a great tournament and put in a fantastic effort. With one grand slam and an Olympic title under his belt Andy is already a Scottish sporting legend."

David Marshall, chief executive of Tennis Scotland, said: "We watched another epic match today between the world number one and effectively the world number two-elect and are guaranteed to see a lot more.

"Andy had a great start with winning the first set but against Djokovic it is never easy. In the second set Andy had three break points which was a crucial stage of the match and would have put him in a very strong position had he got the break of serve and won the set. It is still another Grand Slam final for Andy and everyone at Tennis Scotland is very happy with that achievement."

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