By Martyn Herman
Roger Federer annihilated Andy Murray 6-0 6-1 to seal top spot in Group B at the ATP World Tour Finals on Thursday night and send the shell-shocked home favourite crashing out of the tournament.
Murray managed only eight points in the first set as his hopes of reaching the semi-finals disappeared.
Federer led 6-0 5-0 and 30-0 on Murray’s serve and missed a simple volley that would have given him three match points for a so-called ‘double bagel’.
Murray battled back and finally won a game to huge cheers from the sell-out O2 crowd, although his respite was a brief one as Federer wrapped up a 55-minute win.
Kei Nishikori’s earlier three-set win over alternate David Ferrer ensured Federer had reached the semi-finals even before taking to court against Murray, while the Briton knew only a straight sets win would be enough for him.
Federer ended any confusion in emphatic style, handing out a fearful first-set beating to the man who he lost to in the Olympic singles final at Wimbledon in 2012.
Cracking winners at will against a demoralised Murray, the 33-year-old Swiss maestro silenced the Murray fans in the crowd with a formidable onslaught.
It was Murray’s worst defeat since losing to Novak Djokovic 6-1 6-0 in 2007.