sport

Madrid misery for Murray

A lacklustre Andy Murray suffered a third-round exit at the Mutua Madrid Open after a comprehensive straight sets defeat by Santiago Giraldo.

Murray had won his first match on clay in almost a year on Wednesday evening when he defeated Nicolas Almagro in three sets, but he never looked like repeating the feat on Thursday as Giraldo recorded a 6-3 6-2 win.

It was the Colombian's first victory over Murray in three attempts and comes on the back of his eye-catching run to the final in Barcelona a fortnight ago.

However, although the South American was impressive, Murray was a long way from his best and contributed to his downfall with 24 unforced errors during the contest.

The tone was set as early as Murray's first service game with the Scot sending a backhand long on break-point to hand his opponent a 2-0 lead.

That proved the only break of the set with Giraldo serving out to love at 5-3 to move ahead, a raking forehand winner closing out the ninth game.

Chance missed

Murray did fashion a break-point opportunity of his own at the start of the second, but he netted a weak forehand return to let his opponent off the hook and Giraldo would go on to hold.

It would prove a costly miss as the Colombian broke in the very next game; although Murray did well to fight back from 0-40 down, an unfortunate net-chord would ultimately hand his rival a 2-1 lead.

From that point the British no 1 did not threaten to get back into things and Giraldo gave himself the insurance of a double-break when another poor Murray backhand found the net as he fell 5-2 behind.

Giraldo made no mistake when serving for the match, a booming ace confirming victory and a quarter-final clash against Spaniard Roberto Bautista-Agut.

Murray said afterwards: "He played very well from start to finish, he didn't make many mistakes, but I didn't make it hard enough for him in the second set towards the end.

"I didn't put enough pressure on him to force him to make errors. He dictated most of the points and deserved to win."