Sports Desk, Jan 15 (EFE).- Russian top seed Aslan Karatsev on Saturday beat Andy Murray 6-3, 6-3 to clinch his third ATP title at the Sydney Classic final.
The 28-year-old defeated the former world No.1, who was playing his first final since 2019 after physical issues marred his career in recent years, in just over an hour and a half.
Thanks to effective shots and a spot-on return, the Russian broke Murray’s first serve and sealed the first set also on return in the ninth game, while delivering on serve in between.
A similar scenario occurred in the second set, as the Russian earned an early service break for a 2-0 lead.
Murray, however, carved out a few chances to rally back as he did in the second and fourth rounds against Nikoloz Basilashvili and Reilly Opelka, second and fourth seeded respectively.
Karatsev, world number 20, however, served his way out of trouble, and sealed the set, building on the early break.
“First of all, congrats to Andy,” said the Russian afterwards. “Big effort to come back, to play unbelievable this week. I want to congratulate also your team.”
“Thank you very much to everybody here for coming to support, it was an unbelievable atmosphere in a difficult situation. It’s a difficult time to make this tournament happen, so thank you to everyone,” he added.
Despite the defeat, Murray opted to stay positive: It’s my first time back in the finals for three years, it’s been a long road to get back here but I couldn’t have done it without all of your help so thank you.” EFE