Andy Murray comeback: British star's run at Rafa Nadal Open ended by Matteo Viola

Andy Murray
Andy Murray

Andy Murray's winning run at the Rafa Nadal Open was halted by world number 240 Matteo Viola, who won 3-6 6-4 7-6.

Murray, competing in an ATP Challenger Tour event for the first time since 2005, had secured back-to-back wins in Mallorca as he continues his comeback from hip surgery, but came unstuck against an inspired opponent.

The 32-year-old Scot struggled to maintain his performance levels after breaking Viola's serve twice to win the first set in 51 minutes.

The former world number one never recovered after falling 3-0 behind in the second, and although he fought back from 2-0 down after losing his opening service game in the final set, he did not produce his best.

Both players held serve from 2-2 to force a tie-break, which Viola went on to dominate, winning the first three points and going 6-2 up.

Murray hit a brilliant forehand return on Viola's first match point but served a double fault on his second to hand the Italian the match.

Murray had completed straight-set wins over teenager Imran Sibille and Norbert Gombos in the previous rounds but did not look comfortable against Viola, whose highest career singles ranking is 118.

Three-time major winner Murray will consider his defeat a setback as he builds up his match fitness after having a metal hip implanted in January in a bid to save his career.

He pulled out of the doubles at the US Open to concentrate on his singles career.

Like what you've read?
Help your friends Know It All by sharing this article to your social media.

Most Read

Football gossip and transfer rumours from the back pages1

Paper Talk: Spurs line up Jose

Wednesday's Paper Talk includes Tottenham's pursuit of Jose Mourinho to replace Mauricio Pochettino should be leave the club.

Check out the latest daily tipping preview2

Wednesday's racing preview

Grace And Danger can finally hit the mark in Listed company at Bath, according to Anita Chambers - she has a tip for every race.

Sporting Life's NAP of the day3

Daily Nap: Yes Chef!

Ben Linfoot heads to Kempton Park for the Sporting Life Daily Nap on Wednesday with one of Jim Boyle's fancied to prevail.

Gareth Jones predicts the outcome of the Rugby World Cup quarter finals4

World Cup: Quarter-final predictions

After successfully predicting the majority of the Rugby World Cup pool stage outcomes, Gareth Jones looks ahead to the knockout stages.

Ascot hosts British Champions Day5

Ascot confirm course switch

Ascot has confirmed the contingency plan to switch three British Champions Day races from the waterlogged Round course to the inner Flat course.

Most Read

Football gossip and transfer rumours from the back pages1

Paper Talk: Spurs line up Jose

Wednesday's Paper Talk includes Tottenham's pursuit of Jose Mourinho to replace Mauricio Pochettino should be leave the club.

Check out the latest daily tipping preview2

Wednesday's racing preview

Grace And Danger can finally hit the mark in Listed company at Bath, according to Anita Chambers - she has a tip for every race.

Sporting Life's NAP of the day3

Daily Nap: Yes Chef!

Ben Linfoot heads to Kempton Park for the Sporting Life Daily Nap on Wednesday with one of Jim Boyle's fancied to prevail.

Gareth Jones predicts the outcome of the Rugby World Cup quarter finals4

World Cup: Quarter-final predictions

After successfully predicting the majority of the Rugby World Cup pool stage outcomes, Gareth Jones looks ahead to the knockout stages.

Ascot hosts British Champions Day5

Ascot confirm course switch

Ascot has confirmed the contingency plan to switch three British Champions Day races from the waterlogged Round course to the inner Flat course.

Racing Tips

Check out the latest daily tipping preview

Wednesday's racing preview

Grace And Danger can finally hit the mark in Listed company at Bath, according to Anita Chambers - she has a tip for every race.

Sporting Life's NAP of the day

Daily Nap: Yes Chef!

Ben Linfoot heads to Kempton Park for the Sporting Life Daily Nap on Wednesday with one of Jim Boyle's fancied to prevail.

Check out the latest daily racing preview

Thursday's racing preview

Keith Hamer previews all of Thursday's racing in the UK and Ireland with his best bet coming at Brighton.

Next Race Off

12:50 Feurs
1
(0)
Defi De Retz
J: A Abrivard
5
(0)
Cocktail Desbois
J: E Raffin
9
(0)
Eclat De Gloire
J: L Garcia

Football Tips

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette celebrate a goal for Arsenal in Valencia

Sporting Life Tipping Record

A look at how the Sporting Life recommended bets have performed in October 2019.

All of Sporting Life's current best bets across a range of sports

Our best bets

Check out Sporting Life's best bets across racing, football and more.

Our best bets for Tuesday's Euro 2020 Qualifying action

Euro 2020: Tuesday's preview & tips

The latest international break comes to an end on Tuesday and Tom Carnduff picks out his best bets - all at prices of odds-against.