Madrid | Murray battles through the opening rubber

Andy Murray won his first Davis Cup tie since 2016 since the team’s 2016 semi-final loss to Argentina when the competition was played under the old format

I'm obviously relieved just now. I fought extremely hard but he dictated a lot of the points Andy Murray

.The former wold No.1 however, didn’t find his return to Davis Cup competition easy as he was forced to battle hard against the world No. 179 Tallon Griekspoor of the Netherlands.

Playing as British No.2 for the tie, he eventually came through after nearly three hours of play, 6-7(7) 6-4 7-6(5).

Murray trailed 4-1 in the third set and 4-1 in the decisive tiebreaker but recovered well on both occasions to go on and post the first point in Britain’s favour, showing the defensive skills for which he is famous for, as well as that never say die attitude.

In fact the deciding tiebreak underlined those points marvellously as he responded to the situation and the support from the fans.

“It was a very, very tough match, fantastic atmosphere,” he said after getting his breath back following the effort he put into the win.

The atmosphere certainly matched that which the old format achieved during home ties which gave the new revamped event the credibility the organisers are striving for.

“I think that was one of the things that some of the players were worried about playing at a neutral venue but I thought the atmosphere was brilliant from both sets of fans.

“He played brilliant. I was lucky at the end of the match. He deserved to win.

“I’m obviously relieved just now. I fought extremely hard but he dictated a lot of the points.”

The group-stage tie continues with British number one Dan Evans taking on Robin Haase.



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