Wawrinka, Murray shock fans, make Australian Open first-round exit

Australian Open. Photo Courtesy: UNI

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IBNS: Stan Wawrinka and Andy Murray have bowed out of Australian Open after losing their first-round matches here on Monday.

Wawrinka lost to 20th seed Adrian Mannarino 6-4, 3-6, 5-7, 6-3, 6-0 in a physical five-set battle, while Murray gave in to 30 seed Tomas Martin Etcheverry 6-4, 6-2, 6-2.

The 38-year-old Wawrinka led two sets to one, but the last year’s ankle injury cost him at the business end of the match, where his rival won 12 of the final 15 games of the match.

The injury forced Wawrinka’s retirement against Luca Van Assche in Metz, an ailment that prevented him from doing a full-throttle preparations for the Australian Open. Obviously, the former World No.3 left the arena with a sad look on his face.

Currently No. 56 in the Pepperstone Rankings, Wawrinka has won 568 career matches according to Infosys ATP Stats.

Murray, a five-time Australian Open finalist, also failed to make it through the first round as he was making his 16th appearance at Melbourne Park. He reached the final here in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2016.

Etcheverrry will next face 37-year-old Frenchman Gael Monfils, who advanced to the second round with a 6-4, 6-3, 7-5 win over German Yannick Hanfmann. The two-time Australian Open quarterfinalist clubbed 43 winners, including 16 aces.