Andy Murray, Maria Sharapova, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Madrid Open 2017, tennis news, Murray criticises Maria Sharapova
Andy Murray.Reuters.

World No.1 Andy Murray's disastrous start to 2017 continued at the Madrid Open as he got knocked out in the third round of the tournament after his loss to Borna Coric. The Scot lost in straight sets losing 6-3, 6-3 and hit 28 unforced errors in the two sets and was completely dominated by the Croatian.

With Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal looking in excellent form at the moment, Murray needs to up his game and he needs to do it soon or else he might lose his no.1 ranking by the end of the year. After Murray reached the semi-finals at the Barcelona Open, few people thought he was slowly getting back to his best but after his third round exit at the Madrid Open it looks like he still has a lot of work to do.

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Following that defeat, Murray admitted that his current form is a big concern for him. Murray said that one of the key factors that affected his game was that he was not able to make it difficult for his opponent as he kept making the same mistakes again and again in a lot of the rallies.

"I definitely think I need to be concerned about today. It's not always the worst thing losing a match, but it's sometimes the manner of how you lose the match that can be concerning or disappointing," ATP's official website quoted Murray as saying.

"I was disappointed to lose my match against Thiem in Barcelona, but felt like I competed really well and did some good stuff in the match. Today, I didn't really do any of that. That's concerning. So I need to think about exactly why that is, what I can do about it."

Andy Murray, Maria Sharapova, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Madrid Open 2017, tennis news, Murray criticises Maria Sharapova
Maria Sharapova.Reuters.

While Murray should be focusing on improving his game, the world no.1 once again criticised Maria Sharapova who could be set to receive a wild card entry into the British grass-court events. Murray disagreed with the Lawn Tennis Associations (LTA) decision to hand her a wild card entry and felt they just wanted publicity.

Murray suggested that there should be a discussion about the rules on giving wild cards to players returning from anti-doping suspension and not just about Sharapova.

"They've obviously done what they think is right for that event, and maybe haven't thought as much about the wider implications of it. I'm sure the LTA saw the coverage that was given to the Bouchard-Sharapova match and was given to Maria's run in Stuttgart ... The amount of media that were there covering it, and think that's what's best for the tournament in Birmingham. But I'm sure it split a lot of opinion," Murray said.

"It has been a very divisive subject. Some people think it's absolutely fine, some people think that it isn't—that she shouldn't be getting any wild cards at all. It has divided a lot of opinion."