Tennis world explodes over 'insane' Andy Murray moment at Wimbledon

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Andy Murray, pictured here after winning his first round match at Wimbledon.
Andy Murray sent the tennis world into meltdown at Wimbledon. Image: Getty

Andy Murray has wound back the clock and sent the tennis world into meltdown with an inspirational victory in the first round at Wimbledon.

Playing in his first match at the All England Club since 2017, the Scotsman stunned 24th seed Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-4 6-3 5-7 6-3.

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Despite blowing a huge lead in the third set, Murray held his composure to win in the fourth and sent fans into a frenzy on Centre Court.

Basilashvili had recovered from two sets down to beat Britain's James Ward in the first round in 2019 and with nagging doubts about Murray's physical condition after playing only a handful of top-level matches this year, a repeat looked possible.

With darkness descending over the All England Club, the players left the court while the sliding roof was closed and lights switched on to enable the match to be completed.

The interruption had a rejuvenating effect on Murray, who returned to break serve to love in the first game of the fourth.

Basilashvili broke back immediately with a piercing backhand down the line but then dropped his serve to love again.

Murray had chances for a 4-1 lead in the fourth but Basilashvili dug in to stay in touch and the Georgian then had a break point to get back to 4-4.

Andy Murray, pictured here embracing Nikoloz Basilashvili after their match at Wimbledon.
Andy Murray embraces Nikoloz Basilashvili after their match at Wimbledon. (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

But Murray saved that with a delicate drop shot and pushed hard to win the match on Basilashvili's next service game.

Basilashvili saved a third match point with a sweet winner but at the fourth time of asking Murray got the job done when his opponent sent a backhand into the net.

Ranked 118th in the world, the two-time champion is mounting a comeback after two hip operations. 

He won Wimbledon in 2013 and 2016.

The incredible performance sent the tennis world into meltdown on social media.

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Novak Djokovic overcomes a scare to advance

Earlier, Novak Djokovic launched the return of Wimbledon - and the defence of his singles title - with a few tumbles, a shock first-set loss and, ultimately, a majestic cruise against British teenager Jack Draper.

Much like the comeback of a damp Wimbledon itself after its 2020 cancellation, the Serb had to overcome an uncertain start before finding his assured feet under the Centre Court roof on Monday as he slid onto his derriere with a couple of ungainly falls on the greasy turf.

Yet after somehow losing that opening set during which he'd otherwise largely been in control, Djokovic, seeking the third leg of a potential calendar grand slam, slipped into another gear against the promising left-handed wildcard to prevail comfortably 4-6 6-1 6-2 6-2.

"It feels great," Djokovic told the crowd, saying he felt he was back on the "most sacred court in the world".

"I was very sad last year that Wimbledon was cancelled - it was difficult times for everybody - but I'm really glad the sport is back."

Indeed, after more than 700 days since the grass-court festival last adorned the British sporting summer, it really did feel like old times at SW19 as dismal drizzle prevented early play on the outdoor courts.

with agencies

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