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Raonic Masters Murray; Dolgopolov Suffers No Letdown

Indian Wells, U.S.A.

Raonic© Getty ImagesMilos Raonic converted three of his seven break point opportunities against Andy Murray.

Milos Raonic will play Alexandr Dolgopolov at the BNP Paribas Open after both players advanced to the Indian Wells quarter-finals for the first time on Wednesday afternoon.

Tenth seed Raonic fought back to beat fifth seed Andy Murray 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, venue of the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament. Raonic hit 15 aces and won 83 per cent of his first service points, for victory in two hours and 10 minutes on Stadium 1.

Murray broke Raonic’s serve to love at 4-4 in the first set, when Raonic hit a forehand into the net. Murray bounced back from a 0/30 and 30/40 deficits at 4-4 in the second set, but Raonic’s baseline aggression reaped dividends eventually with a service break in the 12th game to end the 51-minute set.

Murray, contesting his sixth three-set match in his past seven matches, broke Raonic for a 2-1 lead in the deciding set but lost the next four games. Murray saved one set point at 2-5, 30/40. 

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“To get broken two consecutive times in that situation isn't good enough,” said Murray. “I played poor tennis at that stage. I didn't make enough balls [and] missed easy shots… So over the course of the set, if you give up enough unforced errors on basic shots, then with the amount of free points he gets on his serve, that's going to add up to a negative result.

“Today, I was just really disappointed with how the last 15 minutes of the match went. That was really, really poor. [The Abierto Mexicano Telcel in] Acapulco was the same. My matches have been a little bit patchy over the past few weeks.”

Dolgopolov, the No. 28 seed, didn’t experience any letdown after his third-round win over top seed and three-time champion Rafael Nadal on Monday night, when he knocked out No. 13 seed Fabio Fognini 6-2, 6-4 in 76 minutes. He improves to a 5-2 record against Top 20 opponents this year (2-2 vs. Top 10).

Dolgopolov lost five of his service points in the first set, breaking serve in the second and eighth games. He saved three break points in a 14-point seventh game in the second set. In the final game, Fognini hit three double faults to be broken.

Andrei Medvedev was the last Ukrainian to reach the Indian Wells quarter-finals in 1998 (l. to Muster). Last month, World No. 31 Dolgopolov finished runner-up to Nadal at the Rio Open presented by Claro hdtv.

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