Andy Murray said his performance in losing to Alex de Minaur at the Monte-Carlo Masters on Monday was “one of the worst matches I’ve played in my career”.

The Scot, who began the year with a string of wins over top-ranked opponents, was well-prepared, having trained for 10 days on clay in Spain in the build-up and was hopeful of a good display on his first clay-court outing of the year.

But having lost his previous match in Miami in tame fashion, Murray was beaten 6-1, 6-3, leaving him disconsolate and at a loss to explain why.

“It was awful,” Murray told The Herald. “Nothing was good about it. I don't know exactly why that was. Obviously I didn't play a great match in Miami. And this was worse than that.

“I didn't do anything well, didn't serve well, return well, forehands, backhands, shot selection. It was one of the worst I've played in my career, probably.

“I had a match like that last year in Doha against (Roberto) Bautista (Agut) that was pretty bad and maybe one or two others in my career, but in terms of how I felt on the court, it was right up there, just across the board.”

Murray said he would now have to think about whether to play the rest of the clay-court season and said the defeat hurt more because he had trained hard and picked up some good wins.

“I was feeling optimistic coming into the clay,” he said. “I'd been feeling good with my body the last 10 days or so considering I've not played much on it.

“I was feeling good and I'd actually been moving pretty well in practice, so I was optimistic. But it was pretty demoralising and I've not felt like that many times in my career on the court. It was really tough.”

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