Andy Murray avoids upset, beats Radek Stepanek at French Open

Monday May 23rd, 2016

Get breaking news and SI’s biggest stories instantly. Download the new Sports Illustrated app (iOS or Android) and personalize your experience by following your favorite teams and SI writers.

In what was nearly a shocking first–round upset, No. 2 Andy Murray roared back to secure a victory over unseeded Radek Stepanek in five sets at the French Open on Tuesday.

Murray prevailed 3–6, 3–6, 6–0, 6–3, 7–5 in the two-day match against 37-year-old Stepaneck, who is ranked No. 30 on the ATP tour.

On Monday, Murray fell behind two sets to love before winning the third set 6–0. Murray held a 4–2 lead in the fourth set before play was called due to darkness. 

On Tuesday, he continued his comeback, winning the fourth set 6–3 and the fifth 7–5.

WATCH: Stepanek licks contact lens during match with Murray

Murray has reached at least the quarterfinal stage in 10 of his last 11 majors, and is widely expected to be one of No. 1 Novak Djokovic's most formidable challengers at Roland Garros, particularly after he beat the Serb in the Rome final earlier this month.

He will play Mathias Bourgue in the second round. 

- Stanley Kay

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.