A love of tennis, talent and Grand Slam trophies don’t always suffice to get back on top of the game when you’ve had major surgery and your age is creeping up.
On Tuesday night at the National Bank Open presented by Rogers in Montréal, a brave but diminished Andy Murray couldn’t get around 24-year-old Taylor Fritz.
He suffered a cruel 6-1, 6-3 loss to the primed Californian, who’s been having a great season. Fritz, who’s one of the most productive young players on the Tour, took the title at the Masters 1000 in Indian Wells and made it to the final in Eastbourne.
Fritz quickly built up a huge 5-0 lead in the opening set. In the second, Murray was stronger and showed some of the genius of his earlier achievements, but he couldn’t break his opponent, who gained his first win in Canada.
“I really like the result because it means I put a lot of work in. I’m happy with my game. I hope I can keep it going into the US Open.”
When asked about Murray, Fritz added that playing on the same court as his childhood idol was a great honour.
FAA VS. NISHIOKA
Canadian Félix Auger-Aliassime now knows who his second-round opponent will be on Wednesday. It’s Yoshihito Nishioka of Japan, who received a special invitation from tournament organizers after his appearance in the final last Sunday. On Tuesday, he defeated Benoît Paire 6-2, 6-3.
Frances Tiafoe of the US came from behind once again to dispose of Benjamin Bonzi of France (6-7 (6), 7-5, 6-3).
Cameron Norrie (9) of Great Britain sent Brandon Nakashima home in two sets (6-4, 6-4).