Andy Murray blamed himself after suffering more Melbourne misery at the hands of Novak Djokovic on Sunday, losing the pair's third Australian Open final with a dramatic late collapse.
After the first two sets were split in two hours and 32 minutes, Murray looked to be in command against an apparently ailing Djokovic when he broke for a 2-0 lead in the third.
However, from then on the 27-year-old Scot won just one of the next 13 games as a rejuvenated Djokovic raised his level to secure a fifth Australian Open and eighth grand slam title with a 7-6 (7/5) 6-7 (4/7) 6-3 6-0 win in three hours and 39 minutes.
The third set was frustrating because I got a bit distracted when he fell on the ground after a couple of shots. It appeared that he was cramping and then I let that distract me a little bit.
That's what I'm most disappointed about, not so much the fourth set because I think, especially at the end of it, he was just going for everything and it was going in.
Novak Djokovic has secured his fifth Australian Open title with a four set 7-6 (7-5), 6-7 (4-7), 6-3, 6-0 victory over Andy MurrayRead the full story ›
Novak Djokovic leads Andy Murray 2-1 in sets at the Australian Open final after winning the third 6-3.
Murray appeared to be in the ascendancy after breaking in the opening game of the set and holding immediately afterwards, but Djokovic moved through the gears to claim the next three games and race into a 3-2 lead.
He forced three breaks points at 4-3 on the Murray serve and the Scot showed his frustration by smashing his racket on the ground when the Serbian won the second of those.
Djokovic needed just one of his three set points to hold serve and give himself the upper hand at Melbourne Park.
Andy Murray has broken Novak Djokovic in the opening game of the third set after fighting his way back to one set all in the Australian Open final.
World number one Djokovic slipped as he attempted to return a powerful Murray shot, ensuring the Scot made the first of two break points count.
Murray appeared to be in the ascendancy after holding with a love service game to lead 2-0 in the third.
Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic are tied at one set all after the Scot fought back to win the second set 7-6 (7-4).
Vying to lift his first ever Australian Open title, Murray fashioned four set points in the decisive tie break, and clinched the set with an inspired return on the third.
Djokovic had earlier clinched an epic opening set in 72 minutes after an equally tense tie break which he surrendered with a second serve return into the net.
Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic will contest a second set tie break with the match delicately poised.
Vying to lift his first ever Australian Open title, Murray couldn't take advantage of set point at 5-4 on the Djokovic serve.
The Serbian had earlier clinched an epic opening set in 72 minutes after a tense tie break which he surrendered with a second serve return into the net.
Andy Murray has clawed Novak Djokovic back to 4-4 in the second set after breaking the Serbian with a ferocious forehand winner.
World number one Djokovic clinched the opening set in 72 minutes after a tense tie break which could have gone either way.
Andy Murray believes it will take 'a big upset' to beat world number Novak Djokovic in Melbourne on Sunday.
Murray has impressed at this year's tournament but knows he will need to step through the gears in order to win an Australian Open final at the fourth attempt.
"Novak has a fantastic record here," Murray explained during a press conference on Saturday. "He loves the court and conditions, it would be quite a big upset if I win."
Andy Murray will play world number one Novak Djokovic in Sunday's Australian Open final after the Serbian beat Stan Wawrinka in five setsRead the full story ›
Novak Djokovic has secured his 25th career Grand Slam semi-final after a convincing straight sets victory over Milos Raonic.
The four times Australian Open winner will face Stan Wawrinka, who earlier defeated Kei Nishikori.
World number one Djokovic needed a tie break to claim the first set, but went on to break his 24 year-old Canadian opponent early in the second and third sets to claim a 7-6 (7-5) 6-4 6-2 victory.
Eighth seed Raonic, who pushed deep at the grand slams last year, was supposed to offer the first real test for the top-seeded Serb but was completely outclassed under the lights at Rod Laver Arena.
It was the first time Djokovic has booked his place in the Australian Open semi-finals without dropping a set since 2008.