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Andy Murray survived a match point to reach the second round of the Australian Open with a blockbuster five-set victory over Matteo Berrettini – winning 6-3 6-3 4-6 6-7 (7-9) 7-6 (10-6).
The British star looked good to reach the second round after a blistering start against the 13th seed but a tie-break defeat in the fourth looked to take a toll as his Italian rival rallied.
However, the 35-year-old fought hard to reach a tie-break in the decider and raced into a 6-1 lead, winning by 10 points to six as his 26-year-old counterpart ran out of steam in the heat.
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Murray, who had hip resurfacing surgery back in 2019, has reached five finals at the competition between 2010 and 2016, picking up his Grand Slam triumphs at the US Open in 2012 and Wimbledon in 2013 and 2016.
With mum Judi in attendance, Murray rolled back the years when it mattered most and looked emotional on his chair as the crowd applauded his efforts three years after his career looked to be over.
The Scot recent admitted that he will call time on his career when his body is no longer up to the task, but proved that he is still able to beat the big names while playing some impressive tennis.
Murray has only lost once in his career from a two-set lead, with Berrettini winning his last nine tie-breaks at the Australian Open before falling to Murray.
He said after his win: "His serve is incredible, He's a great competitor. He's one of the best competitors on the tour so I did very well to get through."
Then added: "It felt like he was serving unbelievable. He did play extremely well the last three sets."
Awaiting former World No. 1 Murray in the second round is either Fabio Fognini or Thanasi Kokkinakis, with Tim Henman congratulating Murray on Eurosport after the tie.
Murray said when asked what it meant to him: "I mean obviously amazing, to stay with it in that fifth set when he was playing like he was was a physical and mental effort."
He added: "In the last couple of years I've lost these types of matches at the Slams and that could've got away from me.:
He concluded: "I got a bit lucky on the match point – but I earned that."
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