Australian Open 2019: Kyle Edmund loses but Dan Evans goes through

Kyle Edmund
Kyle Edmund only won 40% of points on his first serve in the second set
Australian Open 2019
Venue: Melbourne Park Dates: 14-27 January
Coverage: Daily live commentaries on the BBC Sport website, listen to Tennis Breakfast daily from 07:00 GMT on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra and watch highlights on BBC TV and online from 19 January.

British men's number one Kyle Edmund is out of the Australian Open after a disappointing 6-3 6-0 7-5 first-round loss to Tomas Berdych.

The 24-year-old, a semi-finalist last year, appeared heavy-legged in the heat against the Czech who looked back to his best after an injury-hit 2018.

Edmund only managed one break point against the Berdych serve all match.

Elsewhere, compatriot Dan Evans won his first Grand Slam match since his return from a drugs ban.

The 28-year-old beat fellow qualifier Tatsuma Ito 7-5 6-1 7-6 (10-8) of Japan, throwing his racquet in joy at the end. He will play Roger Federer in the second round.

But Cameron Norrie, who played in his first ATP final on Saturday, was beaten by American Taylor Fritz.

The British number two, ranked 68, lost 6-4 7-6 (8-6) 6-2 to the world number 50.

Andy Murray's agonising five-set defeat by world number 22 Roberto Bautista Agut in what could be his final match, means Evans is the last remaining British male left in the singles draw.

Evans returned from a one-year ban in April 2018 after testing positive for cocaine during 2017's Barcelona Open.

"Winning matches are things I've missed," Evans told BBC Radio 5 live sports extra.

"After the tournament I'll look back. I'm looking forward to getting out there again.

"I really enjoy Melbourne and I felt pretty comfortable today. It was hot out there, but was cooling down towards the end."

Evans will face Federer on Wednesday, following the 20-time Grand Slam champion's straight-set victory over Denis Istomin.

"The last time I played Roger was a bit of a blur," Evans said of his only encounter against Federer, at Wimbledon in 2016, which he lost 6-4 6-2 6-2.

"He's the greatest of all time and it was my first time on Centre Court."

Dan Evans celebrates his win over Tatsuma Ito
Dan Evans reached the fourth round of the Australian Open on his last appearance in Melbourne in 2017

Edmund fails at first hurdle

Edmund replaced Murray as British number one last March after a good start to 2018 when he reached his first Grand Slam semi-final.

The Briton came into Monday's match having lost his only match in 2019. He was up against an opponent who had fallen to world number 57 after injuries, but had recently reached the final in Doha.

Edmund's started poorly when he was broken in the second game of the first set, before an entirely forgettable second set where he won only 40% of points on his first serve and managed only three winners.

The Briton won his opening service game of the third set, which appeared to give him confidence, and had set point in the 10th game. However, he failed to convert his chance, firing a volley wide.

The world number 14 was broken again in the next game before Berdych served out for the match.

Edmund's ranking will drop significantly after this tournament as he loses the points earned in Melbourne last year.

He called the result a "reality check," adding: "I've still got lots of years to play so obviously I'm confident I'll be playing at a good standard again.

"You're always itching to get things done immediately. It just shows where I am at the moment, and how much and where I have to improve."

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