27 Jan 2009

Murray beaten at Melbourne Park

5:42 am on 27 January 2009

The British 4th seed Andy Murray suffered a fair-and-square five-set defeat at the Australian Open tennis championship with almost half yesterday's field reaching the quarter-finals when their opponents retired injured or ill.

Serena Williams, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Gilles Simon all eased into to the last eight of their draws without having to complete their matches but Murray, one of the favourites before the tournament, fell in 5 sets to Spaniard Fernando Verdasco.

The Scot says he had his chances, but sometimes you've just got to say 'too good', and he played better than me.

Spaniard Verdasco faces Jo-Wilfried Tsonga next after last year's finalist beat James Blake in 3.

World number one Rafa Nadal breezed through in straight sets over Fernando Gonzalez, avenging a heavy loss to the Chilean in Melbourne in 2007.... next up for the Spaniard is sixth seed Simon who had a walkover against Gael Monfis.

Elena Dementieva stretched her winning streak to 14 matches when she demolished Slovakia's Dominika Cibulkova 6-2 6-2 to advance.

The Russian fourth seed now meets the dangerous unseeded Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro, who knocked out sixth seed Venus Williams earlier in the tournament, in the quarter-finals.