Australian Open: Andy Murray beats Nick Kyrgios in last eight

By Piers NewberyBBC Sport at Melbourne Park
Andy Murray
  • Murray through to semi-finals in straight sets
  • Briton faces seventh-seed Berdych on Thursday
  • Live on BBC2, online and 5 live sports extra at 08:30 GMT

Britain's Andy Murray ended the run of home favourite Nick Kyrgios with a brilliant display to reach the Australian Open semi-finals.

Murray, 27, outsmarted the 19-year-old to win 6-3 7-6 (7-5) 6-3 and set up a clash with Tomas Berdych on Thursday.

Kyrgios threatened a comeback in the second set tie-break but two superb lobs helped the Scot to a crucial lead.

The sixth seed is through to his fifth Australian Open and 15th Grand Slam semi-final.

In the last four he will take on seventh seed Berdych, now working with Murray's former coach Dani Vallverdu who left the Briton's team in November.

BBC Sport tennis correspondent Russell Fuller
"Kyrgios won the first two points of the match on Murray's serve, but would have to wait an hour and 53 minutes to earn his first break point.
"Murray controlled the course of events with his serve, and proved once again that he is able to put pressure on even the biggest serves with his exceptional ability to return. There was plenty of variety and change of pace and the longer the rallies continued, the better Murray's chances became.
"Tomas Berdych is also playing exceptionally well, and will have Agent Vallverdu's help to devise a game plan which will cause Murray the most discomfort possible in the semi-final."

While Berdych enjoyed a landmark win over Rafael Nadal in his quarter-final, Murray overcame the great new hope of Australian tennis - and a packed and expectant crowd on Rod Laver Arena.

"I didn't go into it obviously thinking like that," said Murray about facing the home favourite.

"I was just trying to win against Nick, which was tough because he has an exceptional serve and makes it very difficult for you when he's serving.

"And it was very tricky conditions as well, so I was quite happy with the way I handled everything tonight."

The dominant force from the outset, particularly on serve, Murray used a variety of spins and angles to keep Kyrgios off balance.

When Kyrgios did suggest a fightback, the Briton was able to find a big serve or a winner to halt the momentum.

Two terrific lunging returns set up a break point in game six and a sliced backhand drew the error when Kyrgios went for too much.

On a cold and breezy evening, the home crowd needed their man to bring a bit of heat to the contest and, after saving an early break point in the second, he worked his way into the match.

A tie-break was required and Kyrgios looked likely to take it when he turned around a 2-0 deficit to lead 4-3 with a break, but Murray played a magical forehand lob to wrestle back the initiative.

Match stats
1Double faults3
691st serve %63
801st serve win %65
672nd serve win %51
3/9Break points1/2
Match time: 2hr 5mins

The Australian had a half-chance facing a second serve at 5-5 but could not make the return, and Murray produced another winning lob off the backhand to clinch the set.

A furious Kyrgios risked a point penalty when he smashed his racquet, having earlier been warned for an audible obscenity, but at least escaped that punishment as he faced the prospect of recovering from two sets down for the second time in three days.

Murray further tightened his grip when he made it a hat-trick of unplayable lobs on the way to breaking for 4-2 in the third, only to slip up with the finish line in sight.

It took nearly two hours for Kyrgios to earn a break point but he converted his second when a distracted Murray netted a backhand, and the crowd came to life.

Murray needed to snuff out the danger quickly and he did just that, thanks in part to a poor line call at 30-0 down which he capitalised on with two thumping cross-court forehand winners.

It left the British number one serving for the match, and there were no alarms this time as he sealed it with a smooth forehand winner down the line.

"It was a really good experience," said Kyrgios, who was aiming to become the first Australian man to reach a Grand Slam semi-final since Lleyton Hewitt in 2005.

"That was my first Aussie Open Grand Slam match playing on Rod Laver, so that was really cool. But he was way too good for me tonight.

"I thought he served really well. A lot of variety. I thought if I could get that second set it's a totally different match, but he won the second set and he was too good."

Andy Murray and Nick Kyrgios
Murray took his winning record against Australian players to 11-0 with victory over Kyrgios
Nick Kyrgios
Aged 19 years and 280 days, Kyrgios was bidding to become the second youngest man to reach the Australian Open semi-finals. Sweden's Mats Wilander was 19 years and 111 days in 1983
Amelie Mauresmo
Murray's coach Amelie Mauresmo has watched her player drop just one set so far in the tournament
One Direction's Niall Horan
Pop star Niall Horan, of chart-topping boy band One Direction, was among the crowd at Rod Laver Arena


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