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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Tuesday January 17, 2023

After his five-set loss to Andy Murray on Day 2 at the Australian Open, Matteo Berrettini admitted to reporters that he struggled to play the contest under the roof in Rod Laver Arena, after warming up in the heat in completely different conditions.

Tennis Express

The Italian said he didn’t make the necessary adjustments, and Murray just handled things better.

“I was ready for different kind of conditions,” he said. “Two minutes before, everything changed. I have to say Andy just handled the situation better.”

Berrettini, though disappointed, was not shy about giving Murray full credit for an incredible performance. The 35-year-old won the four hour and 49 minute epic and improved to 159-1 lifetime when leading by two sets to love.

“It's impressive what he could do after so many surgeries, after all the kilometers that he ran in his career,” Berrettini said. “It's impressive. It just shows how much he loves the game, how much he loves these kind of matches.”

Berrettini, who defeated Murray in four sets at last year’s US Open, said that the Scot is playing much better than he was then.

“I think he played definitely better,” he said. “He was moving way better, hitting the ball better. Everything in general. He served really well. I mean, it wasn't a secret, he's returning one of the best on tour. I knew it would have been a tough first round.

“I mean, he loves to play these kind of matches. He's a great champion. I said it so many times. Personally was great to play with that atmosphere against him. Yeah, just a great match. Unfortunately it didn't go my way.”

Berrettini saw his streak of 12 consecutive first-round wins at the Slams come to an end. He says he was happy that he was able to turn things around and have a chance to win in the fifth, even if he squandered a match point and eventually lost in heartbreaking fashion.

“But the good thing is that I obviously turned the match around with not a lot of tennis,” he said. “I don't think I played really great today. I mean, I had a match point, like you said. Just it's really tough to talk about the match now. Could have been, you know, different just with a different ball.