Murray hits out at Citi Open scheduling after 3am finish

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Andy Murray hit out at the scheduling of his third-round match at the Citi Open in Washington after finishing off a three-set victory over Marius Copil at 3.01am.

Murray is playing just his third tournament since hip surgery in January and must now try to recover for a quarter-final against Alex De Minaur later on Friday.

The Scot even suggested he may pull out rather than risk putting his body through such an ordeal so soon in his comeback after taking three hours and two minutes to defeat Romanian Copil 6-7 (5/7) 6-3 7-6 (7/4).

Murray told reporters at the tournament: “I don’t think it’s reasonable and I’m disappointed in that. I know that the weather’s tricky for the scheduling. But it’s a very difficult position to be in when you’re coming back from such a long lay-off.

“Finishing matches at 3am is not good. It’s not good for the players, not good, I don’t think, for anyone involved in the event. Not good for fans, not good for TV, nobody.”

It was the latest finish in the 50-year history of the tournament, which this year has been blighted by rain.

After shaking hands with Copil and acknowledging the understandably sparse crowd, Murray sat down in his chair and sobbed repeatedly into his towel.

“Just the emotions coming at the end of an extremely long day and a long match,” he said.

Murray looked set to win the opening set against Copil, ranked 93, after moving 5-0 ahead in the tie-break only for the Romanian to reel off seven points in a row.

The 31-year-old levelled the contest and looked the stronger in the decider but Copil pushed him all the way to a deciding tie-break.

It was a third successive three-set match at the tournament for Murray, who defeated American Mackenzie McDonald in the opening round and compatriot Kyle Edmund in his second match on Wednesday.

Cameron Norrie also had a good night, as his 6-4 6-4 win over Adrian Mannarino of France took him into the last four of the Abierto Mexicano in Los Cabos. He will face Italy’s Fabio Fognini for a place in the final.

Norrie won nearly three-quarters of his first serve points as he dismissed the
fourth seed and world number 25 to reach his second successive ATP Tour semi-final.

He is already guaranteed to hit a new career-high ranking inside the top 70 and will bid to reach his first main-tour final.

Heather Watson took Venus Williams to three sets before succumbing 6-4 4-6 6-0 at the Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic in San Jose.

What ? a ? shot! @venuswilliams

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“(I just wanted to) control the points and enjoy the battle, just get out there and try to do what I know that I can. It worked out, thankfully.”

But Katie Boulter was unable to make it a British hat-trick in her delayed second-round clash in Washington against qualifier Allie Kiick.

The match was held up by rain on Thursday with the pair tied at 4-4 in the second set and, although Boulter won that to level the match, American Kiick took the decider for a 6-4 5-7 6-1 victory.

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