LOS ANGELES: Andy Murray squandered a match point in the second set and American Sam Querrey rallied Sunday for a 5-7, 7-6 (7/2), 6-3 victory over the British top seed in the final of the Los Angeles Open.
The 23-year-old Scotsman missed a golden chance for his first ATP title of the season and suffered his first loss in five career meetings with Querrey, who had never before taken a set off Murray.
World number four Murray announced a split from coach Miles Maclagan earlier this week. While he is looking at possible replacements, a final decision is not expected before the US Open.
Hometown favorite Querrey won his fourth title of the season and became the first back-to-back champion at the $700,000 hardcourt event since Andre Agassi defended his crown in 2002.
Second seed Querrey double faulted to surrender the decisive break in the last game of the first set.
In the fifth game of the second set, Querrey blasted a forehand smash wide and netted a forehand to allow Murray to escape break points and hold serve.
Murray had a match point on Querrey’s serve in the 10th game but could not capitalize, sending a backhand wide, and the American held to level at 5-5.
In the tie-breaker, Querrey smacked a crosscourt forehand winner for a 4-1 lead and finished off Murray by scoring the last three points, the last on a forehand winner to finally take a set off Murray after nine prior failures.
Querrey seized a break chance on Murray in the sixth game of the third set and the Scotsman netted a backhand drop volley to surrender the break and fall behind 4-2.
Querrey served for the match at 5-3 but Murray pushed him to a break point. The American answered with a forehand winner and a service winner and when Murray sent a return beyond the baseline, Querrey had claimed the crown.