Andy Murray OUT as he suffers worst defeat of his Wimbledon career

Murray was well beaten (Picture: Getty)

Andy Murray’s Wimbledon run was brought to an abrupt half under the Centre roof as he was beaten in straight sets by Denis Shapovalov.

Murray, the three-time Grand Slam champion from Dunblane, was outclassed by the energetic 10th seed from Canada, who won 6-4 6-2 6-2 in two hours and 17 minutes.

After Dan Evans had been beaten earlier on Friday evening, the British contingent has now been halved, with Cameron Norrie and 18-year-old Emma Raducanu – facing Roger Federer and Sorana Cirstea respectively on Saturday – the home nation’s last remaining hopes.

Murray has vowed he will continue to fight on with his career but this was another reminder of the gap that remains between him and the world’s best.

While there were moments to be excited about, some sizzling backhands and trademark lobs, Murray was largely second best, with Shapovalov’s exciting, power-based game proving too strong. The Canadian will go on to face Spain’s Roberto Bautista Agut in the fourth round.

Denis Shapovalov of Canada celebrates winning a point during his men's singles third round match against Andy Murray of Great Britain on Day Five of The Championships - Wimbledon 2021 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 02, 2021 in London, England.

Shapovalov roared into the last-16 (Picture: Getty)

Statistically, this was Murray’s worst Wimbledon defeat. Prior to this, his worst games returns came in quarter-finals against Rafael Nadal in 2008 and Grigor Dimitrov in 2014. But he won one fewer against Shapovalov than the nine he managed previously.

Still, a run to the third round was par for the course for Murray given the draw. A win over 24th seed Nikoloz Basilashvili and a fightback against German qualifier Oscar Otte will be treasured by British fans after being without their hero at the All England Club for the past four years.

And although it remains extremely unlikely Murray will ever recapture the form that saw him win two Wimbledons and become world No. 1, there is no reason to necessarily fear that he won’t return to SW19.

Starting just after 7pm, with the roof open, Murray found himself flat on the turf twice in the opening two games before marching to the chair – grumbling to the umpire on his way – for a change of footwear.

Shapovalov, meanwhile, came out firing, blasting glorious winners off his equally potent forehand and backhand.

The gap in quality between this opponent and Murray’s last – the world No. 151 Otte – was clear and the Brit found himself overwhelmed and 5-1 down.

Murray would no doubt have been hoping that Shapovalov’s level would drop and so it did. Murray clawed his way back to 5-4 and had multiple opportunities to break before Shapovalov held.

Andy Murray of Great Britain plays a forehand during his men's singles third round match against Denis Shapovalov of Canada during Day Five of The Championships - Wimbledon 2021 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 02, 2021 in London, England.

Murray was well beaten (Picture: Getty)

The final break point was saved with a sumptuous volley from Shapovalov, guiding the awkward ball at his feet to the other side of the net – giving Murray no chance of retrieval.

If Murray felt he had momentum, it was quickly lost in the second. As in the first, he quickly fell a double break down – losing the first with a double fault at an inopportune time.

The second break was converted after great scampering from Shapovalov after a slip, after he clawed the ball back to the other side of the net, Murray dumped a drop-shot into the net.

There was a similar occurence on game point in the fourth game of the third, Shapovalov was left sprawled on the turf and Murray could only find the netting with a poor backhand drop-shot.

After Shapovalov sealed a two-set lead, the Centre Court roof was shut, with the players leaving for a break. It was at this point in the previous two rounds that Murray’s fortunes changed. But not on Friday night.

Shapovalov broke to start the third set and although he ended up on his backside after another slip in the second game, he managed to hold.

The crowd was muted after a second break for the 22-year-old, with a weary-looking Murray gesturing in frustration to his box. The writing was on the wall and although he got a warm send off from the crowd he was soon out of the tournament.

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