Monday, December 11, 2017
Sports

Murray gets his big breakthrough

WIMBLEDON, England — Andy Murray stood with the Union Jack draped over his shoulders, a gold medal around his neck, flanked by the man he had just beaten, Roger Federer, and basking in the roar of the Centre Court crowd.

No wonder the often dour Scotsman was grinning.

Murray won one for the home team Sunday, beating Federer 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 in the tennis final at Wimbledon. The victory marked a career breakthrough for Murray. He has lost all four of his Grand Slam finals, three against Federer, including Wimbledon a month ago.

"It has been the best week of my tennis career by a mile," Murray said. "I've had a lot of tough losses. This is the best way to come back from the Wimbledon final. I'll never forget it."

For Federer, the drubbing marked another Olympic disappointment. Playing in the Games for the fourth time, he sought a victory to complete a career Golden Slam but settled for silver, his first singles medal. "Don't feel too bad for me," Federer said. "I felt like I won my silver, I didn't lose it. So I feel really happy."

Murray swept nine consecutive games to take control, breaking Federer's serve four times in a row, his inspired play a reflection of raucous crowd support. He erased all nine break points he faced.

"He never looked back," Federer said. "His credit for getting in the lead and using the crowd to come through. He did an unbelievable job."

Murray settled for a silver in mixed doubles with teammate Laura Robson. They lost to Victoria Azarenka and Max Mirnyi of Belarus.

Serena Williams and Venus Williams won the women's doubles title, beating Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-4.

Serena became tennis' first double gold medalist at an Olympics since Venus won singles and doubles at the 2000 Games. The sisters also won the doubles gold in 2008. And with Sunday's victory, each has a record four Olympic gold medals.

While Serena was thrilled to win singles, the doubles is what she most cared about, considering the emotional and physical struggles for Venus, diagnosed last year with an autoimmune disease that causes fatigue.

"I really feel proud of what happened here at the Olympics," Venus said.

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