Another round of afternoon rains pushed the schedule way back in an already-behind Washington event. But the main attraction, Andy Murray, made it through a third straight nailbiter. This time in a match that ended at 3:01am!
In three hours, Murray prevailed over Marius Copil 6-7(5), 6-3, 7-6(4), and afterward the Scot broke down in tears.
“Just the emotions coming at the end of an extremely long day and a long match,” Murray said of the tears.
“Body doesn’t feel great right now; I’ve had a few long matches,” Murray said. “The weather has been tricky for the scheduling. But It’s a very difficult position to be coming back from a long injury to be finishing matches at 3 o’clock in the morning. By the time you finish doing recovery and everything it’s 5.30 or 6 o’clock in the morning.
“I’ll try to sleep as late as I can but with your body clock you might get a few hours sleep. It’s like playing two matches in a day.”
Murray also went the distance against Mackenzie McDonald and Kyle Edmund, and today will meet the teen Alex De Minaur who won two matches Thursday beating both Steve Johnson and Hyeon Chung.
But Murray hinted he may not even play on Friday.
“Finishing matches at three in the morning is not good,” Murray said. “It’s not good for the players. It’s not good for anyone, I don’t think, involved in the event. It’s not good for fans, TV. Nobody.
“I’m giving my view right now as someone who’s just come back from a very, very long injury layoff. I don’t think I should be put in a position like that, when you’re expected to come out and perform the next day. I don’t think it’s reasonable.”
Tournament favorite John Isner was the other big story on the day. The recent Atlanta champion looked slow and sluggish on court, and the fleet-footed Noah Rubin took advantage earning his first career Top 10 win with a 6-4, 7-6(6) victory.
Rubin’s delight didn’t last long as the American was ousted later in the day by Andrey Rublev.
Top seed Alexander Zverev had an emotional win over brother Mischa in a first-time tour meeting, getting through 6-3, 7-5.
“Very special. As Mischa said, who can say you played your brother in one of the biggest tournaments in the world?” Alexander said. “It was unbelievably special. I hope this is not the last time. I hope we play a final one day or something like that. So hopefully the first of many.”
David Goffin cruised past Frances Tiafoe and Kei Nishikori knocked out Denis Shapovalov. Nishikori now meets Zverev. Goffin will take on youngster Stefanos Tsitsipas.
In Los Cabos, after an opening round struggle, Juan Martin del Potro looked strong in a 6-1, 6-1 thrashing over 25-year-old tour-debutant Egor Gerasimov.
“I felt better. Obviously the result also marks it and that’s good for my confidence, and I’m happy for playing a good match today,” del Potro said.
“I was quite solid from the baseline and he made many mistakes because of that. I converted every break point I had and that was the key of the match. I was focused from the beginning of the match, and already in the first game I showed him that I was really looking forward to win.”
Del Potro will meet Damir Dzumhur in his semifinal today. The other semifinal pits Cameron Norrie against Fabio Fognini.
In Kitzbuhel, the final clay event of the season has its semifinals set. Nicolas Jarry will duel Denis Istomin and Jaume Munar meets Martin Klizan.
FRIDAY WASHINGTON SCHEDULE
Stadium Starts At 2:00
(3) David Goffin v (10) Stefanos Tsitsipas
(1) Alexander Zverev v (7) Kei Nishikori
Not Before 7:00pm
Denis Kudla v (16) Andrey Rublev
Alex de Minaur v Andy Murray
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