NEWPORT, R.I. -- Top-seeded Andy Murray survived five match
points to beat Ricardo Mello, 6-1, 1-6, 7-6 (5) in the opening
round of the Hall of Fame Tennis Championship on Tuesday.
Murray, 19, overcame inconsistent play and some temper tantrums
to erase Mello's 5-2 lead in the third set.
"I managed to tough it out at the end, but it wasn't a great
match," Murray said. "I knew I could break him, but I probably
wasn't expecting -- to be honest -- to come back down 2-5."
Mello broke Murray in the third game of the final set, slipping
in a backhand passing shot to go up 2-1. He broke again in the
seventh game when Murray's return was ruled just wide. At that
point Murray banged his racket on the grass surface a few times
before biting the end of it to avoid yelling.
Murray broke Mello in the eighth and 10th games, tying the set
at 5-all. He was broken back the next game and issued a court
violation and point penalty after banging his racket to the ground
near the net.
After the penalty, Murray won the next three points before the
game went to deuce nine times. Murray fought off five match points
in the process.
"I probably deserved a warning," Murray said. "I was
surprised I got a point penalty."
Murray went up 3-0 in the tiebreaker before Mello won the next
five points. Murray finally won when Mello hit a backhand volley
into the net, ending the 2-hour, 2-minute match.
Earlier in the year, Great Britain was fined $2,500 after Murray
swore at a chair umpire at a Davis Cup match.
In another first-round match, Mark Philippoussis, who fell out
of the top 100 for the second consecutive season last year due to
injuries, upset No. 3 seed Paul Goldstein, 6-4, 6-2.
Second seed Ivo Karlovic was eliminated when he retired with a
left knee injury in the third set down 2-4 against George Bastl.
Wayne Arthurs downed Kenneth Carlson, 7-6 (5), 7-6 (1) and
eighth-seeded Justin Gimelstob beat Wesley Whitehouse, 4-6, 6-3,
6-4 in two other opening-round matches.