LONDON – Andy Murray’s reign as Queen’s champion came to an abrupt end as the world No. 4 suffered a shock 6-3, 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-1) defeat to France’s Nicolas Mahut, while four-time winner Andy Roddick also bowed out in the second round Wednesday.
Top seed Murray had won the pre-Wimbledon grass-court event in west London twice in the last three years, beating Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in last year’s final, but he paid the price for an error-strewn display as former Queen’s runner-up Mahut enjoyed one of the best wins of his career.
Roddick fared no better as France’s Edouard Roger-Vasselin clinched a shock 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 victory over the seventh seed.
The American has slipped out of the top 30 in the world rankings after an injury-ravaged campaign, but losing to Roger-Vasselin, ranked 67th, on the grass he regards as his favorite surface is a new low.
French second seed Tsonga kicked off his title bid with a 6-3, 6-2 thrashing of British wild card Jamie Baker.
Meanwhile, Taiwan’s Lu Yen-Hsun won 6-7 (3-7), 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (9-7) against Croatian 16th seed Ivo Karlovic.
Italy’s Simone Bolelli also claimed an impressive scalp as he defeated French fourth seed Gilles Simon 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7-2).
Spain’s Feliciano Lopez, the fifth seed, beat Steve Darcis 6-3, 3-6, 7-5, while sixth seed Marin Cilic demolished Australia’s Matthew Ebden 6-2, 6-1.Raonic sparkles
In Halle, Germany, Milos Raonic of Canada defeated Zhang Ze of China 6-1, 6-1 Wednesday to set up a possible quarterfinal with five-time Gerry Weber Open champion Roger Federer.
Raonic made short work of the 217th-ranked qualifier in the second round of the grass-court tournament, breaking Zhang in the fourth game and taking just 20 minutes to win the first set, which he ended with his fifth ace.
The 21st-ranked Raonic had nine aces in the 52-minute win. He will next face 16-time Grand Slam winner Federer or Florian Mayer of Germany, who meet Thursday.
Third seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic also reached the quarterfinals after beating Viktor Troicki of Serbia 6-3, 6-2.
The No. 7-ranked Berdych did not face a break point on serve during an-hour long match against Troicki, who is ranked No. 33.
Mikhail Youzhny of Russia eliminated the fourth-seeded Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.
The Russian will next play Radek Stepanek after the 33-year-old Czech overcame a spirited performance from 21-year-old Cedric-Marcel Stebe of Germany 6-4, 6-4.
Seven-time French Open champion Rafael Nadal teamed up with compatriot Marcel Granollers to defeat Troicki and Michal Mertinak of Slovakia 5-7, 6-2, 10-8.
In Birmingham, top-seeded Francesca Schiavone of Italy was ousted from the Aegon Classic Tournament after a 7-5, 6-4 loss in the first round to Miskai Dothe of Japan Wednesday.
Schiavone was only one of several seeded players exiting the Birmingham tournament early.
The sixth-seeded Mona Barthel of Germany fell to Andrea Hlavackova of the Czech Republic 7-6 (5), 6-2 and the seventh-seeded American, Christina McHale, lost 6-1, 1-6, 7-5 to Elena Vesnina of Russia.
Former world No. 1 Jelena Jankovic of Serbia staved off a bee and two set points in a 6-1, 7-6 (3) win over British wild card Melanie South to reach the Aegon Classic last 16 Wednesday. — Agencies