sport

Djokovic ends Murray's defence

Novak Djokovic ended Andy Murray's ATP Sony Open title defence and advanced to the semi-finals with a 7-5 6-3 victory in Miami.

For Djokovic, a three-time winner in Miami hardcourts, the victory was a small measure of revenge as the rivals clashed for the first time since Murray beat the Serb in last year's Wimbledon final.

With little separating the players throughout, the game hinged on a controversial moment in the first set, when Djokovic was leading 6-5.

With Murray serving to stay in the set Djokovic advanced and appeared to play the ball before it passed over the net - which is against the rules.

The moment was a turning point and although the point stood, Murray seemed to be unable to put it to the back of his mind and lost the game against his serve, with Djokovic duly claiming the first set.

The world number two then wrapped up the second set in comfortable fashion, with Murray still discussing the controversial moment deep into the contest.

The match went on serve in the first set - although Murray had to fight to hold in the fourth game - until the controversial moment swung the momentum into Djokovic's favour.

Murray was serving to level at 6-6 when Djokovic rushed forward and appeared to hit the ball while his racquet was over the net and not on his side of the court.

Murray complained to the chair umpire but his protests fell on deaf ears, and Djokovic duly claimed the game to love to take the first set 7-5.

The Scot continued his protest in between sets but to no avail, and his Serbian opponent was on top as he quickly served to claim a lead in the second.

However, the match settled down and the two men matched each other game for game until Murray broke Djokovic in the fifth, only to suffer a break of his own serve in the very next game.

Djokovic broke again to take a 5-3 lead and served out the next game to love to claim the second set and the match 7-5 6-3 in one hour and 30 minutes.