Andy Murray’s stunning run at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open came to an end as he lost in straight sets to world number eight Daniil Medvedev in Saturday’s final in Doha.
The two-time Wimbledon champion found the encounter against the third seed a step too far as he was beaten 6-4 6-4 in one hour and 47 minutes.
Murray, a wildcard entry into the tournament, had won all four of his previous matches this week in three sets.
He remarkably saved five match points in a draining semi-final against Jiri Lehecka and the 35-year-old former world number one needed to show his battling qualities again.
He pulled a break back after falling 4-1 down in the first set and did so again after going 3-1 down in the second, but this time a comeback was beyond him.
Medvedev replied with another break in the ninth game of the second set and duly held on to complete back-to-back tournament victories following last week’s triumph at the ABN AMRO Open in Rotterdam.
Murray had been seeking a first tournament win in four years but his performances over the week will ensure he rises 18 places in the world rankings to number 52.
The Scot said on the ATP Tour website: “It was an incredible week. Obviously it didn’t finish how I wanted, but I had some amazing matches here, created some great memories.
“It was fantastic to be back in a final here again and against an incredible player.
“Daniil is one of my favourite players to watch and one of the best players on the Tour. It’s great for me to get that opportunity to play against someone of his level in a final again.”
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