Five‑time Australian Open finalist Andy Murray has bowed out at Melbourne Park for possibly the last time, going down in a thrilling 7 set first‑round loss to Roberto Bautista Agut.
Battling a chronic hip injury that has him on the verge of retirement, Murray put up a fight against the Spanish 22nd seed in the four‑hour‑and‑nine‑minute contest.
The 31‑year‑old Scot, who said he will assess his future in the sport after the tournament, had momentum heading into the deciding set but Bautista Agut broke in the third game before serving out the match.
Murray was left limping and in visible pain by the end of the fifth set, that earlier in the match looked long odds.
Triumphs at the 2012 US Open and Wimbledon in 2013 and 2016 and in two Olympic finals ensured Murray was no longer the bridesmaid of men's tennis, cementing his status as a member of the 'big four' alongside Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.
The Scotsman's win at Flushing Meadows came after being a grand‑slam runner‑up four times and saw him become first British man to win a major since 1936.
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