Reuters

Andy Murray beats Kei Nishikori in five-set epic to send Britain into last eight

Murray beats Nishikori in five-set epic to send Britain into last eight
By Eurosport

06/03/2016 at 13:38Updated 06/03/2016 at 21:38

Andy Murray beat Kei Nishikori in a gruelling five-set thriller to send Great Britain into the quarter-finals of the Davis Cup.

With the home side leading 2-1 after the doubles success of the Murray brothers on Saturday, the world No 2 seemed to have his second singles in the bag after taking a two-set lead.

But the Japan No 1, hit back to level the match by taking the next two sets.

Video - Tennis Murray wining second set

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Murray, who was clearly fatigued after two straight days of playing and a weeks out of the game following the birth of his first child, managed to dig deep after falling a break behind in the final set and pull off an astonishing 7-5 7-6 (8-6) 3-6 4-6 6-3 win.

It meant that Dan Evans did not have to face Taro Daniel in the final rubber as Britain had an unassailable 3-1 lead. Britain will now face Serbia – led by world No 1 Novak Djokovic – in the last eight in July.

'I was struggling physically'

"The crowd helped for sure," said Murray. "Physically I was struggling a little bit at the end of the third set and through the fourth.

"He was pushing me quite a long way off the baseline. I was getting a little bit frustrated and panicking. I didn't know how I wanted to play the points.

Video - Davis Cup : itw Smith

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"But in the fifth set I was a little bit calmer. I got pumped up at the end, got a lot of positive energy, and that was enough today.

"Last year was incredible every time I played in the Davis Cup. This team did something special and I would like to do the same again this year.

"Obviously the next match will be extremely tough and if we stick together and fight we have a chance."

'Man of Steel'

Captain Leon Smith reserved special praise for his No 1 player. "I am lost for words at this stage; he is a man of steel, isn't he?" he said.

"What Andy managed to do was astonishing since he hasn't played since the Australian Open final."

Video - Murray last game

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