Andy Murray secures place in Dubai final

The double Olympic men's singles champion from Great Britain was taken to the edge of defeat in the second set by Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber at the ATP 500 event before eventually winning it 20-18 in the tie-break.

The world number one, who was involved in a 31-minute tie-break in his quarter-final, struggled in the first set against seventh seed Pouille.

"We were having dinner and I said "this is really irritating me" and she was like "pull your trousers down and show me, it might be shingles" and I was like "okay". "I have seen bits and pieces of, like, highlights of the matches, but obviously haven't seen loads".

Faced with the prospect of recording a first ever career win against World No. 1, Kohlschreiber's lofty standards could have slipped.

"It's my ability to fight and stay on the match mentally after losing the second set that got me through today", Verdasco said at the post-match Press conference.

Having survived a tense second round battle against Juan Martin Del Potro in the second round, Djokovic was knocked out by Nick Kyrgios in the quarter-finals, with the Australian serving 25 aces in the match.

It was one-way traffic in the second as the Scot raced into a 5-0 lead and although Pouille saved the bagel, Murray held to love in the next game to run out a 7-5 6-1 victor. He also had a solid run in Doha in January, where he made the semis and held five match points against Djokovic before he lost.

Murray admitted his 33-year-old rival forced him into the most hard tiebreaker ever. "And when he's dictating the points, he's one of the best in the world at doing that".

"I think I was a bit too frustrated at the beginning of the second set, and that cost me three or four games", Pouille said.

Verdasco saw off France's Gael Mofils 6-3, 7-5 while Haase defeated Damir Dzumhur of Bosnia and Herzegovina 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.

Fans booking corporate hospitality for The Championships, Wimbledon may be hoping Murray can now push on to win the tournament, which would be the first this year after a mixed start.

  • Stacy Allen