Raonic's big serve beats Murray at Indian Wells

BETH HARRIS AP Sports Writer Published:

INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (AP) -- Milos Raonic rode his big serve to a 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 victory over Andy Murray in the fourth round of the BNP Paribas Open on Wednesday, giving the young Canadian his first win over a top-10 player since September.

Raonic fired 15 aces and held triple match point when he ripped a crosscourt forehand to close out the win after breaking Murray three times in the final set.

"The third set was just a bad, bad set of tennis," said Murray, who broke Raonic to lead 2-1 before losing five of the final six games.

Murray, ranked sixth in the world, struggled in all three of his matches at Indian Wells. He rallied from a set down to beat Lukas Rosol and Jiri Vesely, but couldn't overcome Raonic's power.

"He obviously wins a lot of free points with his serve," Murray said. "So over the course of the set, if you give up enough unforced errors on basic shots, then with the amount of free points he gets on his serve, that's going to add up to a negative result."

Raonic blew his first match point when he returned Murray's serve long. Murray held to trail 5-3, but Raonic held at love to close out the match. He hit 42 winners to 22 for Murray.

"I just tried to impose myself and tried to take care and control of the center of the court as much as I could," Raonic said. "With somebody like him that can find his way out of so many difficult situations and points, it's important sort of take that time away."

Playing his first tournament since injuring his left ankle at the Australian Open in January, Raonic hadn't beaten someone in the top 10 since defeating then-No. 6 Tomas Berdych in the Bangkok final last fall.

"I focused a lot more this event on my attitude and approach during the matches rather than what I'm necessarily playing and just sort of being very hard on myself on that aspect," Raonic said.

Raonic, a 23-year-old ranked 11th in the world, advanced to the quarterfinals against Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine, who beat Fabio Fognini of Italy, 6-2, 6-4.

Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka, Roger Federer, and Novak Djokovic played later matches.

Ernests Gulbis beat Roberto Bautista Agut 7-6 (7), 4-6, 6-2 to reach the quarterfinals.

On the women's side, sixth-seeded Simona Halep defeated Australian qualifier Casey Dellacqua 6-2, 6-2 to earn a berth in the semifinals.