Live Commentary: Shanghai Masters final - Andy Murray vs. Novak Djokovic as it happened

Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray
© PA Photos
Andy Murray squanders five Championship points before Novak Djokovic wins through an epic three-set Shanghai Masters final.

Good morning and welcome to Sports Mole's live text updates from the Shanghai Masters final on the ATP Tour.

Today's encounter sees the two men who contested last month's US Open final face off again, with Novak Djokovic looking to avenge Andy Murray's first Grand Slam triumph in New York.

Both men are on-form at the moment but Murray will feel extremely confident having won this event in both 2010 and 2011.

Can the Scot make it a hat-trick in the Chinese coastal city? Find out below.


1.10pmThanks for joining Sports Mole for coverage of yet another fascinating Murray-Djokovic battle. Keep checking on site throughout the afternoon for reaction from Shanghai. Good afternoon!

1.07pmClick here to read our developing match report on Djokovic's comeback win, which will go some way to avenge his loss to Murray at last month's US Open. The Serb has now won 10 on the bounce since being ousted by Murray at Flushing Meadows.

1.06pmOne of our reporters, Jack Prescott, has just tweeted this: "Novak Djokovic could write a book on saving match points." Quite right.

1.02pmMurray hits long and that's that! I have no idea how Djokovic has won this but he has. Murray will of course feel absolutely devastated having thrown away five match points in the second set but you have to credit Djokovic for his gritty resolve.

1.00pmThis is truly unbelievable. Murray finds an outrageous off-forehand to deny Djokovic once more. Deuce.

12.59pmUnreturnable from Murray and we're back to deuce. This is just plain silly.

12.58pmHis next forehand is wide and it's Championship point Djokovic...

12.58pmMurray's running out of energy but he finds an inch-perfect drop shot. 30-30.

12.57pmThis one could be over very soon. Djokovic has just found two return winners and he's within two points of triumph.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 *3-5 DjokovicACE! Big serve from Djokovic, who is now within a game of a remarkable win.

12.55pmGutsy drive-volley from the Serb opens up another game point.

12.54pmDjokovic has the chance to move within a game of the match but Murray pegs him back and we're at deuce.

12.52pmAnother staggering exchange ends with a delicate half-volley at the net from Murray. Even Djokovic applauds that one. 15-30.

12.50pmThese boys don't make it easy for themselves! Djokovic is presented with a simple forehand but he slaps long. 0-15.

12.50pmHas Andy got anything left? I'm not so sure.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 3-4* DjokovicBREAK! Murray finds a big second serve but it's returned with interest by Djokovic and Murray can only net a forehand to gift the Serb the first break of the decider.

12.48pmAnd the Scot misses another easy one to hand NoDjo two break points.

12.48pmThis is dangerous territory for Murray. Djokovic moves 15-30 up as Murray drifts long.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 *3-3 Djokovic"Game Djokovic" as Murray's backhand return at 40-15 is nowhere near the court.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 3-2* DjokovicAnd that's a mega-important hold from Murray as the clock ticks over the three-hour mark.

12.40pmDjokovic misses out by nudging his return long before Murray opens up game point with some bludgeoning blows off both wings.

12.39pmIt's break point Djokovic as Murray's forehand loops up off the tape and drops wide.

12.38pmThe next rally is another belter and it's Djokovic who wins through as Murray's outrageous pass doesn't quite make it over.

12.37pmMurray's convinced that a Djokovic return is long and challenges but it's not and that's the point conceded. 30-15.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 *2-2 DjokovicThe Scot seems uninterested all of a sudden and slaps the next return wastefully wide.

12.35pmUrgh! An ugly slice from Murray barely reaches the net and Djokovic is 40-15 up.

12.33pmDjokovic begins the fourth game of the third with a double fault.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 2-1* DjokovicThat's an important hold for Muzza as Djokovic was looking to pounce.

12.30pmWe're at deuce as Djokovic hits a couple of big forehands to move Murray out of position.

12.28pmThis is incredible. Murray delivers an amazing winner on the reach to move ahead in the game before getting one of the luckiest net cords ever. Djokovic is in disbelief.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 *1-1 DjokovicMurray has a glimpse at 15-30 but Djokovic finds some serves to level the set.

12.25pmMurray immediately imposes himself on the Djokovic serve by plonking a return onto the baseline. 0-15.

Murray 7-5 [11]6-7 1-0* DjokovicA confident start to the third for Murray. How do these men have any fuel left in the tank?

12.22pmMurray seems to have calmed down and his backhand is really on-song. He's 40-15 up in the opening game.

12.18pmThe captivating tie-breaker is over as Djokovic puts away a drive-volley. That was one of the most gripping 30 minutes of tennis I've ever seen. Murray smashes up one of his rackets. Can the Scot fight back from losing five Championship points?

Murray 7-5 6-6(11-12*) DjokovicMurray misses a simple forehand and now Djokovic has a set point, this time on serve.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*11-11) DjokovicMurray finds a great angle off the backhand and that's 22 points played in this breaker.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*10-11) DjokovicDjokovic finds a big serve and he has a third set point. Enthralling stuff.

Murray 7-5 6-6(10-10*) DjokovicOh my! Murray's all over the point but Djokovic somehow sneaks a backhand up-the-line that Murray can only net.

Murray 7-5 6-6(10-9*) DjokovicA huge one-two serve-forehand from Murray sees him earn a fifth Championship point.

12.13pmWe've been going for two and a half hours now!

Murray 7-5 6-6(*9-9) DjokovicImmense resolve from Murray as he plugs away at the Djokovic backhand to come through. We're again level at the third change of ends. Nip-and-tuck or what?!

Murray 7-5 6-6(*8-9) DjokovicDjokovic's backhand is a little mishit but it just lands in and Murray pushes his out. Second set point for Djokovic...

Murray 7-5 6-6(8-8*) DjokovicIt looks as if Djokovic may be a little tied up at the net but he somehow produces a whipped forehand winner. Mighty.

Murray 7-5 6-6(8-7*) DjokovicMurray has a fourth Championship point, this time on the Djokovic serve.

12.09pmDjokovic's return is called out but it's actually in and we'll replay the point. Ridiculous!

Murray 7-5 6-6(*7-7) DjokovicMurray is bold in coming to the net and Djokovic's pass flies way long. Massive point here at 7-7, Murray serving.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*6-7) DjokovicMurray's deep lob plops over the baseline and now, somehow, Djokovic has a set point!

Murray 7-5 6-6(6-6*) DjokovicThat's three Championship points gone as Murray's mishit return can't quite creep over. This is sport at its gripping best.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*6-5) DjokovicNot this time as Djokovic finds the edge of the line with a forehand. Gutsy.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*6-4) DjokovicBrilliant, brilliant from Murray! Djokovic is all over the point but somehow Murray gets back in it and he now has his second and third Championship points.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*5-4) DjokovicMurray steps in and blasts a backhand return that NoDjo can't get back. The Scot now has two serves for the win.

Murray 7-5 6-6(4-4*) DjokovicDjokovic can't find a first serve and we're back level as he skews a backhand wide. So tense!

Murray 7-5 6-6(3-4*) DjokovicDjokovic again has the mini-break advantage because Murray can't find a successful lob.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*3-3) DjokovicIt's three points apiece at the first change of ends as Djokovic hits long with a backhand.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*2-3) DjokovicDouble fault from Djokovic and we're back on serve in the breaker.

Murray 7-5 6-6(1-3*) DjokovicMurray's on top in the fourth point of the breaker but he's indecisive when thinking of the drop shot before netting a forehand. The Scot is visibly angry and he needs to cool down.

Murray 7-5 6-6(1-2*) DjokovicMurray stops the rot with a big serve down-the-T.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*0-2) DjokovicDjokovic has the first mini-break as Murray nets a backhand. Momentum certainly with the Serb right now.

Murray 7-5 6-6(*0-1) DjokovicMurray's goes long with his return to hand Djokovic the first point.

Murray 7-5 6-6(0-0*) DjokovicIt's tie-break time as Murray holds to-15. Are we going to a third or will Murray finish the job?

11.52amYou'd have thought that Djokovic would really pressure the Murray serve here but the Scot is 30-0 up thanks to NoDjo netting a simple second serve.

Murray 7-5 *5-6 DjokovicMurray should pull it back to 40-30 with a forehand but Djokovic guesses right before winning through as Murray goes wide.

11.48amMurray needs to cool down here. The Scot hasn't got over that break-back and he's now 40-15 down.

11.46amIt's now Murray's turn to chuck away his racket in anger after dumping his return into the net. Emotions really running high here, I love it.

Murray 7-5 5-5* DjokovicBREAK-BACK! Oh my word! Murray's serve is almost perfect but Djokovic puts it back in play before the Scot misses one of the easiest forehands of the match! Amazing scenes.

11.44amThis is getting silly now! Djokovic finds the line with a forehand and he has break-back point! Murray challenged but it was plum on the line.

11.43amMurray is clearly on edge and Djokovic dispatches a short ball to bring us back to deuce. Tense.

11.42amThis is amazing tennis! Murray has championship point after another crazy rally that has the Shanghai crowd ooh-ing and aah-ing at every shot!

11.41amAnd now we're back to 30-30 after another brutal exchange. Nervous times for Murray.

11.40amDjokovic may be about to lose this one but he's just pulled off an exhibition point! Murray lobs the Serb who then produces a through-the-legs shot to the baseline before winning it with a drop shot.

11.39amA forehand on the back foot from Murray finds the corner and Djokovic can only net. Two points away...

11.38amDjokovic challenges a deep forehand that was called out but no good. Murray moves 15-0 up.

11.37amHere we go then. Can Murray hold his nerve?

Murray 7-5 *5-4 DjokovicMuch better from Djokovic as he holds to-15 in a game that included a superb drop-volley. Murray will now serve for the match...

11.34amMany of the experts were saying that Djokovic was playing better tennis than his amazing run at the beginning of 2011 and yet he's playing outplayed by the boy from Dunblane. Remarkable.

Murray 7-5 5-3* DjokovicMurray challenges a second serve at 40-15 and it was good so we'll replay the point and Djokovic's return is out so Murray is within a game of the match.

11.29amDjokovic shows that he won't lie down easily by outhitting Murray to bring the eighth game back to 15-15.

Murray 7-5 *4-3 DjokovicBREAK! Murray's return is stunning but Djokovic manages to get back in the point before coming to net. Murray's first pass attempt clips the tape but the Serb pushes it back over before netting the next low volley to give Murray the break! The US Open champion is now just two games from victory.

11.26amAnd now two break points, the first of the second set, as Djokovic nets a backhand following a prolonged exchange.

11.25amMurray has a glimpse of a break at 15-30.

Murray 7-5 3-3* DjokovicMurray challenges a first serve and it's a whisker out. He then double faults but still has the chance to close out the game, which he does with a beautiful ace down-the-middle. Who will be the first to crack in this extremely even second set?

11.22amBoth men have really struggled to find their first serves today. Murray is at 54%, Djokovic 53%.

Murray 7-5 *2-3 Djokovic"Game Djokovic" as the Serb breaks Murray's defences with a clever forehand back behind the world number three.

11.17amDjokovic is 40-0 up and Murray's return is called long. However, the Scot challenges and yes, it's clearly in. 40-15.

11.16amMurray should punish a pants Djokovic volley but his pass is too close to the Serb, who puts away the forehand volley to move 30-0 ahead.

Murray 7-5 2-2* DjokovicAfter that first set of seven breaks of serve, both men seem settled behind their service as Murray holds to-love.

11.12amIf Murray does triumph then it will be a double British success today after Heather Watson became the first British woman to win a Tour title since 1988 this morning.

Murray 7-5 *1-2 DjokovicMurray goes for the return winner at 40-30 but pushes it just wide.

11.09amDjokovic's first ace of the match sees him move 40-15 ahead on serve.

11.07amMurray's on his knees after another epic! Djokovic comes out on top but Murray will feel that point got away.

Murray 7-5 1-1* DjokovicThree big serves from the Scot see him come from 0-30 down to hold serve and level it up early on in the second. Over to you, Novak...

11.03amIt's a wasteful start to the game from Muzza. He nets a short forehand and Djokovic already has a look of a break at 0-30.

Murray 7-5 *0-1 DjokovicA relatively simple start to the set from the second seed. He holds to-15 and now it's down to Murray to back up that first-set triumph by staying strong behind his service.

10.59amHas Djokovic calmed down in that brief interval before the second? He'll get the set underway...

10.55amYet again Murray somehow stays in the point before Djokovic hits long to hand Murray the opener. That's the first set that the world number two has lost this week.

10.54amThe Scot is denied the first as Djokovic finds a sublime backhand up-the-line. One more...

10.54amHis next return doesn't trouble the court and Murray has two set points.

10.53amMurray moves ahead 30-0 but Djokovic shows that he's still interested in this set with a return plum on the baseline.

10.52amConfident start to the game from Murray as he booms down an ace!

Murray *6-5 DjokovicBREAK! Murray stays in the point and forces Djokovic to play one more volley, which he casually misses! The Australian Open champion is absolutely fuming and smashes his racket multiple times! Wow!

10.49amAnd now we see a wry smile from NoDjo as he misses a drive volley! Break point Murray...

10.48amOh yes he can! What a shot from the Scot! He unloads with an off-backhand and Djokovic must be a little edgy now having been 40-0 ahead.

10.47amTwo of the Serb's forehands can't get over the net though and we're back to 40-30. Can Murray peg it back to deuce?

10.46amAfter that run of successive breaks, both men are now struggling to return. Djokovic 40-0 up.

Murray 5-5* DjokovicMurray dodges those bullets as Djokovic gets all out of place on the return and hits long. Wasteful from the Serb there.

10.43amThat's three in a row for Muzza as he puts away a high backhand volley. Chance to close out the game now.

10.42amIt's hands-on-hips time for Djokovic as he misses a short forehand and we're back to 30-30.

10.41amMurray's in real danger at 0-30 but he's just stemmed the flow to bring it back to 15-30.

Murray *4-5 DjokovicFinally we have a hold of serve as Djokovic comes through. Murray looked to be on his way to this first set but now he's serving to stay in it. Can he do so?

10.36amDjokovics wins the first point but Murray dominates the next and finishes it off with a nonchalant smash. Cool.

Murray 4-4* DjokovicBREAK-BACK! The topsy-turvy nature of this one continues as Murray tamely nets a backhand slice. Six breaks from eight games!

10.33amHe saves the first thanks to a big serve down-the-T.

10.32amDear me! Murray produces a double fault to gift Djokovic three break-back points.

10.32amIt's a shaky start to the game and Murray's already down 0-30. What's wrong with these two on serve?

Murray *4-3 DjokovicBREAK! That's the fifth break in seven games between the pair. Murray squanders the first but converts the second as Djokovic pushes an easy forehand long. Can Murray now hold serve and consolidate the break?

10.26amAnd now three break points as Murray's backhand pass clips the line by the smallest of margins. Ridiculous shot.

10.26amMurray seems to have overcome that little tantrum as he's looking dangerous again on Djokovic's serve at 0-30.

Murray 3-3* DjokovicBREAK-BACK! Djokovic earns another break point with some high, deep groundstrokes before converting thanks to an unforced error from the Scot, who is visibly angry with himself.

10.21amRejected! Murray finds the corner with an off-forehand before making no mistake with the high ball. Deuce #2.

10.20amThe pair trade forehand blows and it's Murray who is the first to crack, dragging his into the net. Break-back point for Djokovic...

10.19amMurray has a chance to open up a two-game lead but he pulls his attempt at a forehand winner. Yet again we're at deuce.

10.18amStrange scenes as Murray's serve is clearly in but called out then corrected so we have to replay the point. The Scot bangs down another big one but NoDjo gets it back before somehow tracking down a Murray drop shot and winning the point. 30-30.

10.16amThis really has been Murray's year and he has definitely now cast off the 'tag-along' label he once had. He's certainly a firm member of the 'big four' in tennis now.

Murray *3-2 DjokovicBREAK! No holding back from the US Open champion as he rockets a forehand return to the baseline. Djokovic manages to get it back over but Murray's next forehand is even more accurate, piercing the corner of the court! That's three games in a row for the third seed.

10.12amAnd now it's break point Murray as he outthinks the Serb at the net before putting away a short ball.

10.11amOh deary me Novak! Murray chips back a booming serve and gives up on the point but Djokovic's elaborate drive-volley smacks the tape and flies long.

10.10amMurray steps inside the baseline and thwacks a backhand but it's wide and Djokovic 30-0 up on his serve.

Murray 2-2* DjokovicWe're back on level terms as NoDjo can't get back another big first serve from Murray. Could be a long morning!

10.06amMurray does brilliantly do loft back a Djokovic forehand but it's to no avail as the Serb smashes away. Back to deuce.

10.05amMurray's in a wee spot of bother on his serve at 30-30 as he nets a simple forehand.

10.04amJust a quick reminder that the final in Shanghai is a standard three-setter so we won't be here for 14 hours or something stupid like that!

10.02amThe pair are also separated by just seven days at birth, with Murray the senior man.

Murray *1-2 DjokovicBREAK-BACK! That's some serious hitting from the Scot! He works his way back into the point before slapping a flat forehand into the corner that Djokovic can only drift wide. Murray began that game with one of the biggest returns I've ever seen. These two really are great to watch together! With playing styles so similar, they always deliver a feast for the eye.

9.59amMurray has two break-back points as Djokovic nets.

Murray 0-2* DjokovicBREAK! Murray goes for the jugular with a backhand down-the-line but he misses and that's the early break for Djokovic. Very little to separate them though.

9.54amIt's another break point for Djokovic as he comes out on top in yet another baseline slug-out. The pair of them are producing exceptional length, rarely does a ball drop inside the service line.

9.53amMurray has the chance to hold but Djokovic says an emphatic 'no' thanks to a big backhand return.

9.51amOh yes! Djokovic is a little negative and the Scot finally wrongfoots him with a cross-court backhand. Deuce.

9.51amMurray saves the first with some brutal groundstrokes from both wings. Can he bring it back to deuce?

9.49amWonderful stuff from Djokovic as he works Murray's backhand before finding a winner up-the-line. Two break points.

9.48amThe first (of many) epic rallies of this match goes Djokovic's way as Murray's 26th shot just goes long.

9.47amThese two are probably the two best returners on Tour and Djokovic has just pinged one onto the baseline. 15-15.

9.47amMurray opens up his serve with an ace. Slap.

Murray *0-1 DjokovicDjokovic manages to hold after being taken to deuce as Murray slams a forehand return into the net.

9.44amWe're at 30-30 in the opening game as Murray pegs NoDjo back with a number of deep groundstrokes.

9.43amMurray does have that effect on his opponents though. Yesterday the great Roger Federer served three doubles in a row because the Scot was completely humiliating his second serve.

9.42amThe Serb follows that up with an early double fault. Nerves? Surely not.

9.42amMorning! Djokovic has just begun the match with a first serve that Murray can only net.


Andy Murray
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ATP RankingsPoints
1Scotland flag Andy Murray7,750
2Spain Rafael Nadal7,555
3Switzerland Roger Federer7,145
4Switzerland Stanislas Wawrinka5,780
5Serbia Novak Djokovic5,325
6Croatia Marin Cilic5,155
7Alexander Zverev4,470
8Austria Dominic Thiem4,030
9Japan Kei Nishikori3,285
10Canada Milos Raonic3,230
11Bulgaria Grigor Dimitrov3,070
12France Jo-Wilfried Tsonga2,770
13Belgium David Goffin2,560
14Spain Roberto Bautista Agut2,425
15Czech Republic Tomas Berdych2,390
16United States Jack Sock2,335
17Pablo Carreno Busta2,305
18Lucas Pouille2,220
19United States John Isner2,110
20United States Sam Querrey2,060