Andy Murray knocked out of Bordeaux Challenger event, French Open preparations suffer blow

Andy Murray knocked out of Bordeaux Challenger event, French Open preparations suffer blow

Andy Murray’s preparations for the French Open were dealt a blow in Bordeaux as he was knocked out in the second round.

The 37-year-old got through his opener in this Challenger level event when his qualifier opponent retired hurt in the second set but this was a step up against former world No49 Gregoire Barrere and the French player won 6-4, 6-2.

Murray, having playing with a Head racket throughout his career, has been trying out a Yonex in Bordeaux. It will be intriguing to see which racket he plays with in Geneva next week, his final event before the French Open.

Whatever equipment he uses, he clearly has a lot of work to do before he can expect to be competitive in Paris over best of five sets, having not played a clay-court match for a year before this week.

The main positive for Murray from this week has been than he does not appear to have been troubled by the ankle injury which has put him out since March.

Andy Murray’s comeback after injury in Miami received a dent at Challenger event in Bordeaux

The 37-year-old was knocked out in the second-round by former world No49 Gregoire Barrere

The 37-year-old was knocked out in the second-round by former world No49 Gregoire Barrere

He moved gingerly between points at times against Barrere, but that hobbling gait has been so ubiquitous in the last few years that it is difficult to read too much into it.

It was almost 9pm local time when the match began as the schedule was disrupted by rain for the second day in a row. The locals wrapped up warm in the stands but it was Murray who came out cold, losing the first five games in a row.

Getting bagelled 6-0 in a Challenger event would have been quite the indignity for a three-time Grand Slam champion, but Murray got his eye in, won the next four games at at 5-4, 15-30 on the Barrere serve looked in with a chance of stealing the set.

But the 30-year-old Frenchman closed out the first set, broke early in the second and did not look back.

Murray’s countryman – and doubles partner for the French Open – Dan Evans won his second-round match and will play China’s Shang Juncheng in Friday’s quarter-finals.

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