Andy Murray's surprise loss to teenage sensation Borna Coric yesterday may have been down to his mind wandering to an upcoming Davis Cup tie, according to the thoughts of former Grand Slam winner Andre Agassi. The Scot will shortly join up with his Great Britain teammates for the clash with the United States between 6th and 8th March, and with the tie being hosted in Glasgow, the American legend believes that makes it extremely important to Murray. It was noticeable that the Brit was the only one of the top four seeds in Dubai to depart before the semi-finals, with his rivals Novak Djokovic, Tomas Berdych and Roger Federer all taking their place in the later stages of the event.
Former world number one, Agassi told BBC Sport that he believes that Murray was potentially already wanting to prepare "for what he probably is really valuing - that is the Davis Cup." It may become even more of an emotional event for the Murray family in general if, as expected, the two brothers unite for the men's doubles against the Americans..
Murray was completely out of sorts in defeat to the young Croatian, who could surely have not expected such a comfortable 6-1 6-3 victory over the world number three player. By contrast, Djokovic was a class apart from his last-eight opponent in Dubai, as he blitzed the Turkish player Marsel Ilhan for the loss of just two games. He will now face Berdych in the semis, after the Czech had to withstand a second set fight back from Sergiy Stakhovsky of the Ukraine, before triumphing 6-3 4-6 6-2. Djokovic has yet to lose a set during the tournament and with a massive head to head advantage of 17-2 against Berdych, will expect to make the final. #Celebrities #TennisDjokovic may well be the overwhelming favourite for that match, but the second semi-final sets up the interesting proposition of Federer against Murray's conqueror Coric.
The Swiss number one had an even speedier result than Djokovic in his quarter-final, taking the first set at a gallop 6-1 and then seeing Richard Gasquet being forced to retire at the start of the second set, citing pain in his lower back area. Federer enjoys his stay in Dubai usually, having taken the title six times already in his career. He will be a massive favourite against Coric of course, but expect the young player to give of his best as he looks for his first final on the ATP tour.