An inspired Dominic Thiem progressed to the final of the Barcelona Open with a thrilling three-set victory over an out-of-sorts Andy Murray.
World number one Murray, who had a 2-0 head-to-head record over Thiem prior to the encounter, had to battle to victory over Albert Ramos-Vinolas on Friday, but 24 hours later succumbed to a 6-2 3-6 6-4 defeat.
The Scot appeared to have turned the tide after levelling the match and going up an early break in the decider, but Thiem was rewarded for his aggressive and accurate play, and he can now look forward to a final with nine-time champion Rafael Nadal or Horacio Zeballos.
Murray was seemingly struggling with an arm injury in the early stages and his timing was well off as Thiem, who had not dropped a set en route to the last four, broke at the first opportunity.
A mixture of brilliant striking from Thiem and sloppy play from Murray led to a double-break 4-1 lead when the Scot sent a forehand long. Thiem endured a slight dip as Murray earned one break back, but he quickly regained the momentum as a sublime sliced cross-court forehand and a brilliant backhand pass restored his healthy advantage.—AFP