Olympic Flashback: Andy Murray eases past Roger Federer to embrace Olympic glory

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Olympic Flashback: Andy Murray eases past Roger Federer to embrace Olympic glory

Roger Federer won the seventh Wimbledon title in 2012, defeating Andy Murray in four sets in the title clash. Four weeks later, Roger and Andy met again at the Wimbledon Centre Court, this time in the Olympic Games gold medal match.

On August 5, Andy took down the great rival 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 in an hour and 56 minutes to become the first Briton with the gold medal in men's singles since Josiah Ritchie in 1908, who also did it in front of the home crowd in London!

It was the 17th meeting between these two, and Murray earned the first victory over Roger since Shanghai 2010 and ninth in total. It was a perfect chance for Roger to finally win the Olympic gold medal, considering the event was played at his beloved Wimbledon, where he just won the title.

He lost only one set in the first four encounters before that incredible semi-final clash with Juan Martin del Potro that Roger won 3-6, 7-6, 19-17 in four hours and 26 minutes! It was the most extended best-of-three sets match in the Open era, with the final set turning into open war and lasting two hours and 43 minutes alone.

Many blame this match for Roger's weak performance in the final, although it has to be said that he had a day off on Saturday, while Andy had to play two mixed doubles matches on that day, with both going to the match tie break.

Like Roger, Andy lost one set before the semi-final, beating world no. 2 Novak Djokovic 7-5, 7-5 to reach the gold medal match against Federer on Sunday. The Briton served at only 51% but drew the most from his initial shot, defending his second serve, which is always crucial for him, and fending off all nine break chances (six in the second set's third game alone) to keep his serve intact.

On the other hand, his return game was top-notch, taking 45% of the points on Roger's serve and breaking the Swiss five times from ten opportunities to embrace straight-sets triumph.

Andy Murray defeated Roger Federer in the 2012 Olympics gold medal match.

Roger had an excellent chance to open the match with a break, wasting two break points in the first game before holding at love in game two.

Andy had his first opportunity in game four, but Federer escaped with an ace to level the score at 2-2. The Swiss faced more troubles on serve next time around, and Andy broke him to open a 4-2 advantage when Roger netted a backhand.

The Briton sealed the opening set with another break at 5-2 after hitting a backhand down the line winner that gave him a boost. The home player continued to deliver deep and strong strokes that kept Federer under pressure in set number two, securing a break at love in the second game.

Roger could have erased the deficit a few minutes later, squandering no less than six break chances after failing to impose his shots and move Murray from the comfort zone. More importantly, Roger would earn only one opportunity on the return in the rest of the clash, mounting all the pressure at his side of the net and struggling to deal with it.

The Swiss suffered another massive blow in the next game, letting a 40-15 advantage go away and dropping serve after a double fault to find himself 6-2, 4-0 behind. Serving for the set in game seven, Andy escaped a break with a service winner and wrapped it up with another to forge two sets to love advantage after just 83 minutes.

They opened the third set with four good holds, and it was Murray who delivered a decisive move with a break in game five. The Briton cemented the advantage with a hold at love, putting Roger in a more challenging position and making his dream of winning the men's singles gold more distant with every next game.

The Swiss did well to save a couple of break points at 2-4, reducing the deficit but desperately needing something huge on a return and in a relatively fast manner. However, Andy was just too strong, holding at love again in game eight to increase the lead to 5-3 and moving a game away from the Olympic glory.

Serving for the title at 5-4, Murray delivered three service winners to bring the victory home and start a celebration of what had been one of his most favorite and emotional titles he ever won. The Briton avenged that Wimbledon final loss and built momentum ahead of 2013 when he finally conquered the home Major.