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Murray survives major scare in Dubai

Press Association logoPress Association 2/03/2017

Andy Murray has saved a remarkable seven match points before seeing off Philipp Kohlschreiber in a gruelling quarter-final of the Dubai Duty Free Championships.

The world No.1 lost his first set of the tournament and saved the match points in the second set before recovering to see off the German 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (20-18) 6-1 in little under three hours.

Following a delayed start due to rain, Murray missed several early break points before two double faults in the tiebreak swung the opening set in favour of the world No.29.

Murray recovered quickly, forcing an early break in the second set but was unable to cope with some stunning groundstrokes from Kohlschreiber, who effectively hit the Scot off the court to force a second tie-break.

The 33-year-old missed out on seven match points before Murray snatched a dramatic tiebreak 20-18 after around half an hour as Kohlschreiber hit wide.

Murray coasted through the decisive set with Kohlschreiber unable to maintain his high standard, with the top seed breaking early to establish control before sealing a place in the semi-finals.

Fernando Verdasco advanced to the semi-finals by beating fourth-seeded Frenchman Gael Monfils 6-3 7-5.

The 35th-ranked Verdasco, one of five unseeded players in the quarter-finals, had lost all three of his previous matches against Monfils.

"I tried to be aggressive but not make too many unforced errors," Verdasco said.

"He's one of the best defenders in the game. I came out and just wanted to play my game."

Verdasco served for the match at 5-4 in the second set but had his serve broken at love. He won the next two games to secure a semifinal berth.

Verdasco will next play Robin Haase, who defeated Dami Dzumhur 6-2 4-6 6-4.

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