Canada Flashback: Roger Federer loses tight final to Andy Murray



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Canada Flashback: Roger Federer loses tight final to Andy Murray

The dominant figures on the Tour in the last couple of years, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, reached the semi-final of the Masters 1000 event in Toronto 2010. Andy Murray went all the way to clinch the 15th ATP title and the fifth at the Masters 1000 level, beating Rafael Nadal in the semis and Roger Federer in the title match.

Andy became one of only a few players who defeated Roger and Rafa at the same event and the first who defended the Canada Open since Andre Agassi in 1995. It wasn't easy to settle into a rhythm in the rain-interrupted final.

Still, Andy emerged as a winner following a 7-5, 7-5 triumph in two hours and five minutes, claiming the seventh victory over Roger in 12 encounters and the first since Indian Wells 2009. The Briton struggled to find the first serve, and Roger couldn't take advantage of that, creating four break chances and stealing the rival's serve three times.

Instead of building on that, Federer struggled behind the initial shot, dropping over 40% of the points and playing against ten break chances. He gave serve away five times after almost 30 unforced errors to end on the losing side and miss a chance of winning the third crown in Toronto after 2004 and 2006.

Andy had 24 winners and 24 unforced errors. At the same time, Roger stood on a negative 20-31 ratio, unable to impose his shots and take advantage in the shortest rallies against the rival who played well during the entire week.

Murray made sure to get off to a perfect start, breaking in the match's first game after forcing Roger's error and holding at 15 with a service winner to confirm the lead. Federer was yet to hit the zone, handing serve away once again in game three following a backhand error to send Murray 3-0 up and leave himself with a lot of work in the rest of the set if he wanted to get back into contention.

Andy Murray beat Roger Federer 7-5, 7-5 in the 2010 Toronto final.

The Swiss started to climb back in game four after breaking Andy at love and fired a service winner in the next one to move closer to the opponent. A forehand winner pushed Murray 4-2 in front, but Roger was now the ruler in his games, reducing the deficit and hoping for more chances on the return.

It did not come in game eight, as Andy held after Roger's backhand error, leaving the Swiss to serve for staying in the opener. Federer held at 30 to reduce the deficit to 4-5 and grabbed that desired break a few minutes later after Murray's costly double fault, as the Briton missed a massive opportunity to close the set.

Roger squandered a game point at 5-5 and sprayed a forehand error to gift another break to Andy, who did everything right this time around, forcing Federer's backhand mistake to clinch the first set 7-5 in 47 minutes.

The rain started to cause troubles at the beginning of the second set, and Roger was the first who suffered from the lack of rhythm, spraying a forehand error in game five to find himself a set and a break down. They had to go off the court for almost an hour, with Federer pulling the break back in game six when they returned to level the score at 3-3 and gain a boost to fight until the very last point.

A forehand winner sent Roger 4-3 ahead before Andy made a good hold with a service winner to keep himself on the positive side of the scoreboard. Federer stayed focused and closed the ninth game with a forehand drive volley winner.

Still, Murray was not to be denied, bringing the tenth game home with an unreturned serve and preparing himself for the pivotal game of the entire encounter. Roger collapsed under pressure this time, and Andy broke him with a volley winner after a well-constructed attack that allowed him to serve for the title in the next game.

Federer had a chance to prolong the set and possibly the match but missed a clean forehand that could have given him two break chances. Still, he earned the one last possibility to reach the tie break that Andy repelled with an ace and hit another to gain a match point, squandering it when his drop shot failed to pass the net.

The second championship point was the lucky one for Murray, who started a title celebration, the first since Valencia in 2009.