Henman beaten in five set thriller - again

Tim Henman continued his run of losing Gram Slam matches in five set thrillers when he lost his nerve against Richard Krajicek in the early hours of this morning.

Tim Henman continued his run of losing Gram Slam matches in five set thrillers when he lost his nerve against Richard Krajicek in the early hours of this morning.

After similar defeats to Chris Woodruff in the Australian Open, Fernando Vicente in the French Open, and Mark Philippoussis at Wimbledon, Henman completed a frustratingly unique Grand Slam of his own by double faulting on match point after three hours and 24 minutes of play.

The British number one had looked on his way to a memorable victory when he took a two sets to one lead in their third round match at Flushing Meadows.

But the Dutchman fought back bravely to take his place in the fourth round with a 6-4 3-6 4-6 7-5 7-5 victory.

And for the second day running, following Greg Rusedski's defeat by Cedric Pioline, a Briton had lost a Grand Slam match from a seemingly winning position.

It was a devastating blow for Henman because the way was wide open to a quarter-final with Pete Sampras - and if he could have won that match-up, as he did two weeks ago in Cincinatti, his first Grand Slam final surely beckoned.

As it is, Krajicek will play Slovakian Dominic Hrbaty in the next round, but Henman can be proud of his gutsy performance.

After a shaky start, in which Henman lost the first set with a string of unforced errors, the Briton dominated - but two double faults in the 12th game of the fourth set were his downfall.

Krajicek seized on the chink in his service solidity to manufacture the break and seize the set.

It meant Henman was always serving last in the crucial fifth set and, though his courage never failed him, his serve did - losing the match when he served a weak and excrutiating double fault on match point after he had earlier netted a simple volley.

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