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Murray splits from coach Mauresmo

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Andy Murray split with coach Amelie Mauresmo on Monday, ending a groundbreaking two-year relationship during which the British star improved as a clay-court player but failed to add to his collection of Grand Slam titles.

A statement released by Murray’s management company didn’t disclose the reason behind the decision, although Mauresmo said “dedicating enough time along with the travel has been a challenge for me.”

The Frenchwoman gave birth to her first child in August and took six months off from coaching.

“Working with Andy over the last two years has been a fantastic experience for me,” said Mauresmo, a former top-ranked player who won the Australian Open and Wimbledon in 2006. “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed being part of the great team of people he has around him.”

Murray became the first high-profile tennis player to hire a woman as a coach when he brought Mauresmo on board in June 2014.

By that time, he was already a two-time Grand Slam champion – at the U.S. Open in 2012 and Wimbledon in 2013 – and had also won a gold medal at the London Olympics in 2012.

Under Mauresmo, Murray reached the final at the Australian Open in 2015 and `16, losing both times to top-ranked Novak Djokovic. He won his first clay-court titles last year in Munich and Madrid.

“I’ve learned a lot from Amelie over the last two years, both on and off the court,” Murray said in the statement. “She’s been a calming influence in the team and we will all miss having her around.”

Murray is heading into a busy period of the season, with the French Open, Wimbledon, Rio de Janiero Olympics and U.S. Open all in the next four months.

“I’ll take some time to consider the next steps and how we progress from here,” Murray said, “but I’d like to thank her for everything she has done, she’s been an invaluable member of the team.”

Raonic withdraws from Miami Open with hamstring injury

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KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. (AP) Milos Raonic has pulled out of the Miami Open after aggravating a right hamstring injury that sidelined him for nearly a month.

The No. 3-seeded Raonic withdrew before Sunday’s match against American qualifier Jared Donaldson, who advanced to the fourth round.

Raonic said his injury became progressively worse after his opening match, his first since Feb. 25. He expects to be sidelined at least two weeks and perhaps longer.

The Canadian said he hasn’t made it through an entire tournament healthy since Wimbledon last July.

Nadal advances to start bid for first Key Biscayne

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KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. — Rafael Nadal’s first fist pump Friday followed his second point in the Miami Open, when he kissed a forehand off the sideline to win a long rally.

He accompanied the celebratory gesture with a skip in his step and then hit the accelerator, holding every service game to beat Dudi Sela 6-3, 6-4.

Thus began Nadal’s latest bid to win Key Biscayne.

“A lot of big motivation,” he said.

He’s playing the tournament for the 13th time and has never won it, although he was the runner-up in 2005, 2008, 2010 and 2014. At 0 for 12, it’s Nadal’s longest drought at any event, and perhaps the most glaring gap in the 14-time Grand Slam champion’s resume.

Does it bug him? He won’t admit to any frustration, but lets slip that he still remembers the exact score when he was two points from the title in the third set versus Novak Djokovic.

That was six years ago.

“Against Novak – 6-5, 15-30,” Nadal said. “It didn’t happen.”

The Spaniard has always enjoyed the atmosphere in Miami, where Latin fans give him enthusiastic support, and he likes the tournament’s hard courts. He’s simply overdue.

“I’m trying my best every year,” Nadal told the stadium crowd after dispatching Sela. “I’ve been very close four times. I will try to give myself another chance.”

Nadal is 15-4 this year and pleased with his play. He lost to Roger Federer in the Australian Open final, and again in the fourth round at Indian Wells last week.

Against Sela, Nadal served well, erased the only two break points he faced and overcame the occasional errant groundstroke on a windy afternoon.

“It was very difficult to find the right feelings,” Nadal said. “These kind of days, what you have to do is try to win. That’s what I did, and I’m happy with that.”

Making Nadal’s title bid easier will be the absence of six-time champion Djokovic and two-time champion Andy Murray, both out with elbow injuries.

But No. 3-seeded Milos Raonic is back. He won in his first match since Feb. 25, beating Viktor Troicki 6-3, 7-5. Raonic had been sidelined by a right leg injury.

“I’ve prepared the best I can for this tournament,” Raonic said. “I’m not necessarily in the best position right now, but fortunately it’s a long tournament. Doesn’t mean things can’t change and I can’t get better throughout this event.”

No. 2 Kei Nishikori beat Kevin Anderson 6-4, 6-3. No. 7 Marin Cilic lost to Jeremy Chardy 6-4, 2-6, 6-3.

In women’s play, Elena Vesnina made a quick exit only five days after winning the biggest title of her career. Seeded 13th, Vesnina lost her opening match to wild card Ajla Tomljanovic 3-6, 6-4, 7-5.

Vesnina beat Svetlana Kuznetsova in the Indian Wells final.

In a match that took two days because of rain, No. 6 Garbine Muguruza rallied past Christina McHale 0-6, 7-6 (6), 6-4. No. 3 Simona Halep beat Naomi Osaka 6-4, 2-6, 6-3. American qualifier Taylor Townsend eliminated No. 25 Robert Vinci 6-3, 6-2.