Top seeds Andy Murray and Angelique Kerber lose in Australian Open

‘It’s just tennis’ – Andy Murray’s words before disappearing after shock Australian Open loss

It was a shocking day at the Australian Open on Sunday when both world No. 1 players — Angelique Kerber and Andy Murray — were upset in fourth round matches.

Top-seeded Andy Murray is out of the Australian Open, the five-time finalist losing in four sets in a Sunday afternoon upset to Mischa Zverev.

“It’s just tennis,” Andy Murray said before disappearing into the Melbourne night after losing to a player 50 places below him in the world rankings.

The top seed and reigning champion Angelique Kerber was bundled out of the fourth round of the Australian Open by the big-hitting American Coco Vandeweghe on Sunday, losing 6-2, 6-3 on Rod Laver Arena.

Murray and Kerber lost hours apart in the fourth round, leaving the tournament without both No. 1-ranked players prior to the quarterfinals for the first time in the Open Era.

A day after his younger brother nearly upset one of the game’s greats at the season’s first major, Mischa Zverev went one better when he eliminated Murray in four sets to hand the Scot his worst grand slam defeat — in ranking — in a decade.

The top-ranked Murray, a five-time Australian Open finalist, was unsettled by the left-handed serve and volleyer in a 7-5, 5-7, 6-2, 6-4 upset loss Sunday on Rod Laver Arena.

Zverev attacked Murray, unsettling his natural baseline game, and won 65 of 118 points at the net.

The 29-year-old German made some stunning, lunging volleys on clutch points, but for him it was all a blur.

“Honestly, I don’t know, it was like I was in a little coma, I just served and volleyed my way through,” Zverev said. “Honestly there were a few points where I don’t know how I pulled it off.”

The last time both No. 1 players in the world lost before the quarterfinals on the same day at a Grand Slam was at Wimbledon in 2014. At the time, Serena Williams fell to Alize Cornet of France in the third round and Rafael Nadal lost to Nick Kyrgios of Australia in the fourth round.

The last time both No. 1 players were defeated in the same round, but not on the same day, was in the 2010 French Open quarterfinals where Nadal fell to Robin Soderling of Sweden and Williams fell to Sam Stosur of Australia.

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About the Author: Akhtar Jamal

Tribune International