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Novak Djokovic vs Lorenzo Musetti LIVE: Tennis result in Dubai plus Andy Murray score

The Serbian was playing for the first time since being deported from Australia ahead of the 2022 Australian Open

Jamie Braidwood
Tuesday 22 February 2022 09:48 GMT
(AFP via Getty Images)

Novak Djokovic made a winning return to tennis in his first match since being deported from Australia as the men’s world No 1 defeated Lorenzo Musetti in straight sets at the Dubai Duty Free Championships.

Djokovic, who was cheered on by a supportive crowd in Dubai, made light work of the 19-year-old Musetti to seal a 6-3 6-3 win in what was his first match in three months following the controversy that surrounded his Covid-19 vaccination status at the Australian Open last month.

The Serbian missed the opening grand slam of the year amid a battle in the Australian courts over his exemption for the vaccine that ultimately saw him deported from the country ahead of the tournament on “health and safety” grounds.

Djokovic, who remains unvaccinated, has said he is prepared to miss future grand slams over his stance but was able to enter the tournament in Dubai, a tournament where he is a five-time champion.

The world No 1 was welcomed onto the court and the crowd chanted ‘Novak, Novak!’ upon the 20-time major champion taking the opening break of serve midway through the first set.

Djokovic had not played a competitive match since the Davis Cup finals in early December of last year but it did not take long for the Serbian to get back up to speed as he swiftly saw off the challenge of the highly-rated Musetti.

Follow live reaction from Djokovic vs Musetti - after Andy Murray outlasted Chris O’Connell in three sets


Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

Murray 6-7, 6-4, 3-2 O’Connell*

Murray fires himself up after O’Connell gets his teeth into a service game for the first time since the opening set. After O’Connell hit a winner down the line and Murray dropped a double fault to bring up deuce, he finds the first serves required to pull him out of danger.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 17:27

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7, 6-4, 2-2 O’Connell

After holding to love, Murray turns the pressure onto O’Connell’s serve but lets out his first shout of frustration in a while as he sees a backhand drift long at 30-30. Another unforced error at deuce lets O’Connell of the hook and he is able to escape with a hold as he finds just a second ace of the match.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 17:23

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7, 6-4, 1-1 O’Connell

Murray outlasts O’Connell to hold serve in the opening game of the decider, winning the point of the match so far with a volley at the net after scrambling to keep a O’Connell smash in play.

O’Connell is then able to outmanoeuvre Murray on a couple of points in the next game to hold to love. There really isn’t much to separate these players two games into the deciding set.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 17:13

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7, 6-4 O’Connell

Murray races through his service game to love - meaning he has still just dropped five points on serve so far this set.

O’Connell finds himself needing to hold to stay in the set but is able to to get to 30-0 with a forehand winner.

An error from O’Connell is followed by the shot of the match from Murray! He races to get down to an O’Connell volley before whipping the forehand winner down the line.

O’Connell slumps a shot into the net and that brings up set point - brilliant depth there from Murray as O’Connell balloons a backhand out of the court.

After Murray threatened a meltdown after the opening set, that was much calmer from the former world No 1. We’re heading to a decider.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 17:01

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7, 4-3 O’Connell

Murray cruises through his next service game with a forehand winner and ace lightening the load and easing the pressure.

Another break of serve would do nicely, and he claims the first point on the O’Connell serve with a well constructed opener, sealed with a backhand drop shot at the net.

O’Connell responds by opening his body to find the forehand winner across court, followed by a smash.

Murray hangs on to get to 30-30 but is soon annoyed with himself after missing on a forehand out wide.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 16:52

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7, 3-2 O’Connell

Murray and O’Connell quickly trade holds of serves, with the Australian hitting a lovely backhand winner to seal his service game on the last point.

O’Connell is showing signs of settling again after a loose game to open this second set. He’ll look to attack the Murray serve again next.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 16:44

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7, 2-1 O’Connell

After that promising opening game, the errors continue to mount for Murray as he quickly finds himself facing break point on his serve.

He claws himself out of trouble, though, and is able to seal the hold with an ace out wide. Murray then seemed to be limping slightly as he awaited O’Connell’s first serve.

O’Connell is then able to get onto the board with a hold to love.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 16:38

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7, 1-0 O’Connell

Murray received a warning for unsportsmanlike conduct at the end of that opening set - it only came after the fifth racket smash from the Scot.

He gets off to a great start in O’Connell’s opening service game, however, firing a winner into the corner as O’Connell misses on the next point.

Another winner from Murray sets up three break points and O’Connell can’t keep up as Murray increases the tempo of his groundstrokes as he sends a forehand wide.

He gets the opening break.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 16:27

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

*Murray 6-7 O’Connell

Murray is an inch away from a opening ace but wins the point anyway as O’Connell fires wide. Murray then drops a shot short and is able to pass O’Connell with a forehand up the line, before he plays his best point of the match so far as he rushes the net to put away the volley.

Murray rushes the net again but O’Connell is able to find the angle on the backhand, before O’Connell fires an ace straight up the middle to get back on terms at 3-3.

O’Connell stays patient to outlast Murray on the next point - the longest rally of the match so far. The Australian sends a forehand winner past Murray, which is followed by another smash of his racket.

Murray finds a good angle on his backhand to get back to 4-4, before O’Connell drops a lovely return into Murray’s feet to get the mini-break at 4-5.

Murray sends a backhand long of the baseline - cue another swipe with his racket - before O’Connell seals the opening set with a serve that Murray can’t return.

Murray smashes his racket in frustration - again - after a messy opening set. He had chances to break O’Connell throughout but his accuracy let him down.

Jamie Braidwood21 February 2022 16:16

Murray vs O’Connell updates ahead of Djokovic return

Jack Rathborn21 February 2022 16:15

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