Emotional Murray battles to Brisbane victory

Sun Jan 6, 2013 4:07am EST
 

By Will Swanton

BRISBANE (Reuters) - An emotional Andy Murray fought back tears and dedicated his victory to "a sick friend" after defeating Grigor Dimitrov in a gripping Brisbane International final on Sunday.

Defending champion Murray prevailed 7-6 6-4 after weathering a storm from his 21-year-old Bulgarian opponent in the opening set.

The U.S. Open champion played a flawless tiebreaker to win it 7-0 and a clinical second set allowed him to recover a service break and complete ideal preparations for the Australian Open, which begins at Melbourne Park on January 14.

"I'd like to dedicate this victory to one of my best friends back home," Murray said in his speech at the presentation. "You're going to be okay. You're going to get through."

When Murray signed a television lens after the match, he wrote "For You .....", the third word being indecipherable.

He was asked about the dedication in his post-match conference and replied: "Just a sick friend."

Murray's secrecy mirrored his comments after his matches at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open last year when he pointed both index fingers to the sky after all of his matches.

He made the same gesture after beating Dimitrov in his final tournament before the Australian Open, but was earlier in an agitated mood when the Bulgarian raced to a 5-2 first-set lead.   Continued...

 
Andy Murray of Britain poses with the trophy after defeating Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria in their men's final match at the Brisbane International tennis tournament January 6, 2013. REUTERS/Daniel Munoz