Andy Murray kept his cool to reach the ATP Stuttgart grass final as Nick Kyrgios went into meltdown in a losing semi-final effort on Saturday in Stuttgart.
Murray, gaining confidence by the match as his game returns to its usual form after half a decade of injury dramas, stayed on the Kyrgios emotional roller-coaster for a 7-6(5), 6-2 win which he called the second set “not really a match.”
The Australian’s hair-trigger temper kicked off in the first set tiebreaker which wrapped up a 66-minute opening set which Murray won.
As his boilover reached intensity with a ball hammered out of the court, a racquet smash and an interchange with nearby fans, the No. 78 was issued with a point and then a game penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.
A visit from the tournament referee did little to calm the waters, with Kyrgios putting in minimal effort as he went down to the straight-sets loss.
Murray will play his second final of the season on Sunday against Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini, who held off German Oscar Otte 7-6(7), 7-6(5).
Murray tried to keep his attention on his side of the court as Kyrgios erupted with frustration after losing the opening set.
“I had some opportunities near the end of the first and I could tell he was getting frustrated,” the three-time Grand Slam champion said..
“He hit the ball over a fence; I got my first mini-break. Set point was a long rally.
“It was a very frustrating set for him to lose and he broke a racquet.
“He also had a back and forth with the umpire and something seemed to happen in the crowd. But I didn’t really hear anything after the first set.”
Kyrgios’s temper was jot helped as he lost a point and the first game of the second set for unsportsmanlike conduct.
“The second set was not much fun to play, it was not very competitive,” Murray said after reaching his 70th career final. “It wasn’t really a match.
“He started well but closer to the end he got frustrated. The first set was tough and the end of the first set was the crucial part of the match.
“You expect things to happen against him, so I’m not surprised when they do.
“I try to go about my business and play more solid like I did today.”
Main photo:- Andy Murray beating Nick Kyrgios today top reach his first tour level final on grass for six years – by ATPTour.com