Britain's Andy Murray had to produce a classic comeback after a roof-closing delay to overcome German wildcard Oscar Otte and reach the Wimbledon third round.
Murray looked poised to bow out of his long-awaited return to SW19 as his 27-year-old opponent won the second and third sets and appeared to be in total command.
However, the 34-year-old, who has seemingly endured no end of injury woes over the last few years, delighted the Centre Court crowd as he roared back to win in five sets. Much like in his first-round clash, the closing of the roof mid-match provided a perfect reset for the Brit and he returned from the delay a different player.
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The two-time champion had limped off the same court following a quarter-final defeat to Sam Querrey in 2017 - then as the top seed - and had not been back since with hip surgeries in 2018 and 2019, so this was another moment of jubilation and relief on his return to his favourite stage.
But this was not a victory without a scare: Murray slipped over on the increasingly notorious Centre Court turf on numerous occasions and shouted about the "dangerous" surface after sliding down yet again deep in the tense fifth set.
Thankfully for Murray, he was able to gather himself without significant harm and close out the match. The break for the roof to be closed on Centre Court certainly appeared to help give him a much-needed reset once again and Otte could not muster the necessary resistance late in the deciding set.

Andy Murray of Great Britain celebrates in his Men's Singles Second Round match against Oscar Otte of Germany during Day Three of The Championships - Wimbledon 2021

Image credit: Getty Images

The atmosphere only got more intense as the fans willed Murray on to victory after the break for the roof to be closed, and he finally sealed the deal at nearly 11pm UK time to give him and his camp a great deal of relief.
For Otte, this will certainly be a case of what could have been. At two sets up he appeared to be flying with all the momentum and a spring in his step, but the wait for the roof to be closed seemed to break his rhythm.
Murray simply hung in there when it counted and used the raucous Centre Court crowd to his advantage as he grabbed the decisive break of serve in the fifth set and simply refused to let it slip.
The 34-year-old will next take on Canada's Denis Shapovalov - the 10th seed - who was afforded the luxury of a few days off after he benefited from a walkover in the second round.

Andy Murray of Great Britain celebrates in his Men's Singles Second Round match against Oscar Otte of Germany during Day Three of The Championships - Wimbledon 2021

Image credit: Getty Images

Shapovalov will certainly represent a much bigger threat for the two-time Wimbledon champion when the pair lock horns on Friday, but Murray is certainly up for the challenge.
The Brit will feel relieved to have come through the marathon match relatively unscathed after his falls on the slick turf but will now have to recover quickly for round three and a serious test.
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