That was the word Andy Murray used over and over to describe how he felt about his exit from the U.S. Open.
After all, Murray arrived at Flushing Meadows ranked No. 2, owner of a tour-leading 37 wins on hard courts this season – and quite sure he was prepared to win his first Grand Slam title a year after reaching the U.S. Open final. Instead, he heads home after the fourth round, a 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 loser to No. 16 Marin Cilic of Croatia on Tuesday.
And now Murray will slide back to No. 3 in the rankings, a spot behind Rafael Nadal, who will move up by virtue of beating No. 13 Gael Monfils 6-7 (3), 6-3, 6-1, 6-3 in Tuesday night’s last match to get to the quarterfinals.
Nadal, trying to complete a career Grand Slam by winning the U.S. Open, will meet No. 11 Fernando Gonzalez of Chile in the semifinals. Gonzalez eliminated No. 7 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (3), 6-4.
Murray’s loss, at least for one evening, turned into the talk of a tournament that had been generating very little buzz about the men’s field. Instead, the focus has been on the women’s event, thanks to the surprising emergence of 17-year-old American Melanie Oudin and the quick comeback of former No. 1 Kim Clijsters.
Clijsters beat Venus Williams in the fourth round; now she will take on defending champion Serena Williams, who improved to 23-1 in Grand Slam singles matches this season by beating No. 10 Flavia Pennetta of Italy 6-4, 6-3 Tuesday night.
Still unranked because she only had played in two tournaments before the U.S. Open, Clijsters is the first unseeded player to reach the semifinals at Flushing Meadows since Elena Dementieva in 2000.
Clijsters left the game in 2007, married American basketball player Brian Lynch later that year, then gave birth to daughter Jada in February 2008. Since returning to competition in August, Clijsters is 10-2.
Catchings, Douglas lead Fever in win
Miscellany: Tamika Catchings had 17 points and 10 rebounds, Katie Douglas also scored 17 and the Indiana Fever beat the New York Liberty 69-63.
Briann January (Lewis and Clark HS) added 12 points for Indiana (22-10), which has already clinched the top seed in the Eastern Conference and tied Phoenix for the WNBA’s best record. January scored six points in the final 4:55 as the Fever closed the game with a 10-4 run.
Essence Carson scored 17 points, Ashley Battle had 12, and Janel McCarville added 11 for New York (12-20), which has lost three straight and four of five. The Liberty have already been eliminated from postseason contention.
January’s jumper gave Indiana a 61-59 lead with 4:55 left and the Fever didn’t trail again.
•Civil suit dropped if Roethlisberger apologizes: The lawyer for a former Nevada casino worker who has accused Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger of sexually assaulting her says his client will drop her civil lawsuit if he acknowledges the rape and apologizes.
Attorney Cal Dunlap says in a letter to Roethlisberger’s lawyers that his client would also like the quarterback to donate $100,000 to the Committee to Aid Abused Women, a Reno nonprofit organization.
The woman filed the suit in July accusing the Super Bowl-winning quarterback assaulted her in 2008 in a hotel across the street from a golf course where he was playing in a celebrity tournament.
•Mayfield sues stepmother in father’s death: Suspended NASCAR driver Jeremy Mayfield has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against his estranged stepmother over the 2007 death of his father.
The suit, filed Sept. 4 in North Carolina Superior Court, does not allege how Lisa Mayfield was involved in her husband’s death. It only claims her “intentional actions” played a direct role in Terry Mayfield’s death.
A police investigation determined Terry Mayfield died from a suicidal gunshot wound to the chest.
Damages are not specified in the three-page wrongful death complaint.
•Louis Vuitton launches new racing circuit: A new world circuit of America’s Cup-class yacht racing will start in November, making stops in New Zealand and Italy and featuring 10 teams.
Eight entries, including Emirates Team New Zealand and American syndicate BMW Oracle, have already been confirmed. The 10 teams will compete in existing boats from the previous editions of the America’s Cup in a round-robin, one-on-one match racing format, spokesman Bruno Trouble said.
The Louis Vuitton World Series follows the introduction this year of the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series in Auckland.
The eight confirmed entries also include France’s K-Challenge and Team French Spirit, Italians Mascalzone Latino and Italia By Joe Fly, Swedish Challenge Artemis and Synergy Russian Sailing Team. Alinghi, runner-up in the Pacific Series won by Team New Zealand, is not among them.
•Limit is $3,000 in Delaware sports lottery: Delaware officials say gamblers will be able to bet anywhere from $2 to $3,000 on NFL games when the state’s new sports betting lottery starts this week.
Gamblers also will be allowed to bet “off the board,” which means they can go up to the sports book windows at the state’s three casinos, examine the latest odds, and then place their parlay bets.