Murray's king of Queen's

Murray's king of Queen's

Bhupathi-Paes lose in final to Bryan brothers

Andy Murray with his Queen’s Club trophy after getting past Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the final. AFP

Briton Andy Murray withstood an athletic onslaught from Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to beat the Frenchman 3-6, 7-6, 6-4 and win the final of the Queen's Club championships on Monday.

The climax of the Wimbledon warm-up event was being held a day late after rain washed out play on Sunday and, while conditions stayed dry, Murray weathered the storm of Tsonga's fast groundstrokes, diving volleys and energetic charges.

Murray, who picked up his second Queen's trophy after also triumphing in 2009, goes into next week's grasscourt Grand Slam at the All England Club having given the British public and media even more reason than usual to set expectations high.

Having dished out a grasscourt masterclass to American Andy Roddick in the semifinals, Murray was forced to play a different game against Tsonga who hurled every imaginable shot at the Briton while also throwing his body across the court.

The Frenchman's high-risk strategy of attack had looked like paying off before an unlucky net cord in the 11th game of the second set prevented him from breaking to serve for the match.

The ball bounced off the top of the net and had looked like it would make it over the net before dropping down on the wrong side in what was a major turning point in the match.
His mouth often caught somewhere between a grimace and a look of mild amusement as Tsonga reached the most impossible shots, Murray gave the Frenchman a taste of his own medicine with some outlandish shots of his own.

His first between-the-legs forehand was unbelievably batted back by a diving Tsonga in the second set but the second time he tried the trick, he won the point at the net to go 5-3 up in the final set.

Having won the second-set tiebreak with ease 7-2, Murray carried his momentum through the third set where he dominated and he wrapped up the title with a seemingly heart-felt smash as Tsonga's tenacious challenge came to an end.

In the doubles event India’s Leander Paes and Mahesh Bhupathi finished second best after losing yet another final to American twins Mike and Bob Bryan. The third seed ‘Indian Express’ squandered a first-set lead to lose the final 7-6 (7-2), 6-7(7-4), 6-10 to the top seeds.

Paes and Bhupathi had lost to the Bryan brothers in the Australian Open summit clash in January also. This defeat means, a third title of the 2011 season slipped out of the hands of the Indian veterans, who had won the Chennai Open and Miami Masters earlier.

Venus returns with win

American Venus Williams marked her return from an abdominal injury with an impressive 7-5, 5-7, 6-3 victory over Germany's Andrea Petkovic at the Eastbourne championships on Monday. The five-times Wimbledon champion, playing her first match since January's Australian Open third round when she retired after one game also against Petkovic, looked completely at home on the slick grasscourts.

Lisicki triumphs

Germany's Sabine Lisicki made up for lost time by crushing in-form Daniela Hantuchova in the delayed final of the Edgbaston championship.

The unseeded Lisicki won 6-3, 6-2 to claim the title at the Wimbledon warm-up event, which needed an extra day to complete after Sunday's torrential rain.

Sania advances

Sania Mirza is one win away from making the main draw of the women’s singles of WTA AEGON International tournament as she reached the final round of the qualifiers with a hard-fought 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 win over Georgia’s Anna Tatishvili in Eastbourne.

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