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Serena, Murray knocked out of mixed doubles

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Published in Breaking News
Wednesday, 10 July 2019 09:40

LONDON -- After thrilling fans with news of their much-speculated pairing, followed by two impressive victories in front of capacity crowds, Serena Williams and Andy Murray are out of the mixed doubles tournament at Wimbledon.

The fan favorites fell to Bruno Soares and Nicole Melichar, the top-seeded pair, in three sets, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2, on Wednesday in the third round.

The pair -- known affectionately by fans as "Serandy" or "Murena" -- was broken twice in the third set and trailed 4-0. They were unable to recover.

However, despite the early exit, both Williams and Murray said following the loss that they were happy with the experience of playing with one another.

"We had so much fun," said Williams, who plays in the semifinals of the singles draw on Thursday. "We aren't ready for it to be over. But we both are obviously focused on our health, both of us actually, taking it literally one day at a time, seeing what happens from there.

"We did have a good tournament. I think overall we played really well for our first time playing together."

Murray made his return to competition last month following hip surgery, and played in the doubles and mixed doubles events at his home Slam. He spoke glowingly of Williams and her competitive drive.

"I guess it was more a confirmation of something that you would have expected from someone that's won as much as she's done," said Murray. "It was just the fact that she was so into it, so competitive, which is cool. I like that. Some people might just see it as being maybe mixed doubles. We're playing it to have fun and get matches.

"But a genuine kind of desire and will to win, which I would have expected that to have been the case, but I didn't know that about her. Never spent any time on the court with her. That was the thing that was nice whilst we were on the court. She was really into wanting to win and pumped. I like that."

Their pairing and participation brought more attention than usual for the mixed doubles draw, and their first match drew a delighted crowd on Centre Court. Williams' sister Venus was also in the draw, with Frances Tiafoe, as well as Murray's brother Jamie, with Bethanie Mattek-Sands, among other notable players.

Williams and Murray had a friendly banter -- on and off the court -- during the tournament, and Williams teased Murray for all of the questions he continued to receive about his health and future plans with the sport. She said it was a "relief" for all of the attention to be on him.

She was, however, hopeful the support from the British fans would continue for her in the singles draw. She faces Barbora Strycova with a final berth on the line in the second match on Centre Court on Thursday.

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