2016 ROLAND GARROS
World Number Two tennis player, Andy Murray, had to fight back to beat wildcard Mathias Bourgue in five sets and secure his place in the French Open third round.
The British number one lost eight consecutive games to drop the second and then the third sets to the inspired 22-year-old Grand Slam debutant.
But Murray, 29, used all his experience to seal a 6-2 2-6 4-6 6-2 6-3 win over the world number 164 from France.
Fellow Briton Kyle Edmund lost 6-4 6-4 6-4 to American 15th seed John Isner.
Aljaz Bedene, who plays today, is the only other British player left in the singles tournaments in Paris.
Murray was also taken to five sets in the first round by veteran Czech Radek Stepanek.
The Scot’s inconsistent form has been perplexing considering he beat Novak Djokovic in the Italian Open final in his last match on clay.
He now goes on to face 27th seed Ivo Karlovic from Croatia in the third round tomorrow.
“Mathias was excellent and made me run a lot. He’s got a fantastic future for sure.
“I led 6-2 2-0 then he started playing unbelievably and I was finding it hard to win points, let alone games. I’ve played matches like this before and tried to fight through to the end because your opponent can hit a rough patch.
“You can’t play too many matches like this if you want to go far in this tournament. I hope to win the next one a little bit faster.”
Murray looked in complete control at 2-0 up in the second set, but his game collapsed in spectacular fashion.
Bourgue broke Murray three times and won six games in a row, including 16 unanswered points as the Briton made numerous unforced errors, to take the set and level the match.
The pattern continued as Murray double-faulted twice in the opening game of the next set.
Murray finally broke Bourgue’s eight-game winning run by taking the third game of the set.
Bourgue was also dominant on his own serve, holding to love six times out of seven, as a subdued Murray, having now lost 28 out of the last 32 points, continued to make mistakes.
The Frenchman had three break points in the next game but Murray – yet to show any of the passion evident during his tussle with Stepanek – battled back to hold serve.
Bourgue continued to produce an array of winners, including the deftest of drop shots, to delight the home crowd in Philippe Chatrier court.
The Frenchman, showing few signs of nerves, secured the set with a stunning backhand down the line to leave Murray facing an almighty battle to stay in the tournament.
The Frenchman had three chances to break Murray in the opening game of the fourth but crucially the Scot held on, and celebrated with his trademark roar and a fist-pump.
At last Murray broke Bourgue’s serve and followed that by holding his own to love, as confidence slowly returned to his game.
With Bourgue perhaps struggling with his fitness, Murray started to make his opponent work harder and clinched the set with a break to love to level the match.
Murray sensed his opportunity and took advantage of some rare errors to break the Frenchman in the fourth game of the decider.
The Briton served for the match at 5-1 but failed to close it out before finally sealing victory after three hours and 34 minutes on court.