Paris:Fourth-seeded Andy Murray of Britain was left frustrated by the playing conditions on a rainy middle Sunday at the French Open as he was beaten 6-4, 7-5, 6-3 by Tomas Berdych in the fourth round.
Murray, a quarterfinalist at Roland Garros last year when he posted his best result at the clay-court Grand Slam, struggled with his first serve and was broken five times by his opponent from the Czech Republic.
Murray, who produced a stunning comeback from two sets down in the first round against Richard Gasquet, admitted Berdych adapted better to the wet and windy conditions.
"I knew what to expect going out there," Murray said. "Obviously, the later it gets, it's going to get slower. But you can't make excuses about the conditions. It's exactly the same for the both of us. It's just tough conditions to play in, and he played better than me."
Berdych, who has yet to drop a set in Paris this year, has never been so far in the tournament and will next face 11th-seeded Mikhail Youzhny of Russia.
"I hope it's not going to be my last match here," the 24-year-old Berdych said. "It was a solid game today. I'm very happy with that."
In a rain-affected match that ended at 9:34PM local time, Murray never looked at ease and was thrown by the rhythm imposed by Berdych, who hit 47 winners.
"Maybe it looks like it was really comfortable but with the delays and with the weather, with the darkness and the late time, we both were fighting," Berdych said. "But I deserved to win."
Murray took a 4-3 lead in the second set before rain interrupted play for about half an hour. Unhappy with the conditions and the fading light, Murray was not pleased having to return to the court and grumbled to the chair umpire through to the end.
"It was slow, wet, damp conditions. It was just heavy out there," Murray said. "It was one of those days... The balls were gathering a lot of clay. The balls were brown by the end of the match. Just tough to see. It was dark in the end."
Murray was broken in the 11th game of the second set before Berdych served it out, and the Scottish player lost his serve in the seventh game of the third when he double-faulted and then missed an easy backhand.
Berdych won the last four games of the match and sealed victory when Murray buried a forehand into the net.