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Shock defeats send Williams, Murray crashing out of Miami Open

Last updated on: March 29, 2016 10:41 IST

Photos from the matches played at the Miami Open on Monday

Serena Williams congratulates Svetlana Kuznetsova after their match during the Miami Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center in Key Biscayne, Florida, on Monday

IMAGE: Serena Williams congratulates Svetlana Kuznetsova after their match during the Miami Open at Crandon Park Tennis Center in Key Biscayne, Florida, on Monday. Photograph: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Serena Williams's bid for a ninth Miami Open title came to shock end when the world number one was beaten 6-7(3), 6-1, 6-2 in the fourth round by 15th-seeded Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova on Monday.

The loss on the Miami hardcourts was the first since 2012 for William, who had swept the last three titles in her unofficial home tournament.

"I'm really thrilled," said Kuznetsova after registering her first win over Williams since 2009.

"I'm sorry fans, who are disappointed that Serena's not going to keep playing, but for sure she'll be at more events than here.

"I'm really happy with my performance. I tried to stay at a good level the whole game. I think I did that pretty well and I'm happy with the way I served today."

Serena Williams plays a backhand against Svetlana Kuznetsova

IMAGE: Serena Williams plays a backhand against Svetlana Kuznetsova. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

A tight first set saw both Williams and Kuznetsova register a break but neither player could gain the upper hand, sending the opener to a tie-break which the top-seeded American dominated 7-3 with the help of a pair of thundering aces.

A battling Kuznetsova controlled the second set from the start, breaking the 21-times grand slam winner to go up 3-1 then sweeping the next three games to level the contest at a set apiece.

The Russian upped the pressure with a pair of breaks to start the third as she stormed through the opening three games before Williams finally stopped the bleeding with a break of her own at 3-1.

The relief was brief, however, as former US and French Open champion Kuznetsova immediately hit back with yet another break and went on to finish off the upset in just over two hours.

Belarus' Victoria Azarenka reacts during her match against Spain's Garbine Muguruza

IMAGE: Belarus' Victoria Azarenka reacts during her match against Spain's Garbine Muguruza. Photograph: Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

It was a day of dramatic upsets at Crandon Park, as Williams stepped onto the Stadium court for her Round of 16 match immediately after third-seeded world number two Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland was tripped up by 19th-seeded Swiss Timea Bacsinszky 2-6, 6-4, 6-2.

Radwanska was the winner on the Miami hardcourts in 2012 before Serena Williams embarked on her three title run.

The upsets continued into the afternoon with fourth-seeded Spaniard Garbine Muguruza falling 7-6(6), 7-6(4) to 13th-seeded Belarusian Victoria Azarenka, still in top form following her victory this month at Indian Wells.

Second-seeded Angelique Kerber narrowly avoided being another victim as she survived Timea Babos 6-2, 3-6, 6-4 in the day's late match.

In other action, fifth-seeded Romanian Simona Halep eased into the quarters with a tidy 6-3, 6-4 decision over British wildcard Heather Watson.

Britain, however, will be represented in the last eight as Johanna Konta tamed another Romanian, Monica Niculescu, 6-2, 6-2.

Murray upset by Dimitrov

Grigor Dimitrov shakes hands at the net after his three set victory against Andy Murray in their third round match at the Miami Open on Monday

IMAGE: Grigor Dimitrov shakes hands at the net after his three set victory against Andy Murray in their third round match at the Miami Open on Monday. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Andy Murray, accustomed to going deep into the Miami Open, was derailed in the third round on Monday, falling 6-7(1) ,6-4, 6-3 to Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov on Monday.

After winning a tight opening set by breezing through a 7-1 tie-break, Murray quickly found himself down a break 2-0 in the second and that was all the 26th-seeded Dimitrov needed to level the match.

Murray, a two-times Miami champion who had reached the final three times in the last four years, grabbed the initiative in the third set, breaking his Russian opponent to nose ahead 3-1 but a determined Dimitrov broke right back to get the decisive set back on level terms.

Grigor Dimitrov plays a backhand against Andy Murray

IMAGE: Grigor Dimitrov plays a backhand against Andy Murray. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Service breaks continued with Dimitrov going on top again 4-3 and the Bulgarian consolidated his advantage by holding serve for a 5-3 lead.

With Murray serving to stay in the match Dimitrov broke yet again, closing out the rollercoaster contest on his first match point in two hours 25 minutes.

Next up for Dimitrov will be Frenchman Gael Monfils, who hit 13 aces in a 6-3, 6-4 win over Pablo Cuevas.

Sixth seed Kei Nishikori of Japan eased into the fourth round past Ukraine's Alexander Dolgopolov 6-2, 6-2, while ninth-seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga was shown the Crandon Park exit by Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut 2-6, 6-3, 7-6(3).

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