Roger Federer
Roger Federer suffered a shock second round exit against Evgeny Donskoy at the Dubai Tennis Championships on Wednesday (1 March) Getty

Roger Federer was dumped out of the Dubai Tennis Championships after a shock defeat at the hands of world number 116 Evgeny Donskoy in the second round.

The Swiss ace looked comfortable after winning the first set 6-3 and was on course for victory when he was leading in the second set tie-break. But the unknown Russian was not ready to give up. In an unbelievable turn of events he saved three match points to win the second set tie-break 9-7.

Donskoy was not done, the third set went into the tie-break yet again, and looked to be going Federer's way, when he raced to a 5-1 lead, but the Russian won the six points to take the match 6-3, 7-6, 7-6 to record the biggest win of his career.

The former world number one was playing in his first tournament since his triumph at the 2017 Australian Open. Federer has won the Dubai event seven times and was one of the facvourites for the title. It was unlike the Swiss maestro to forego multiple chances to win and he admitted after that there were 'no excuses' despite admitting that he suffered a minor injury during the Australian Open.

"I just never really got going tonight and sort of felt heavy," Federer said after his shock loss, as quoted by Sky Sports.

"But look, those matches happen frequently, where you just got to somehow find a way to come through. Tonight I was convinced that, if I came through, I was going to feel better tomorrow. I came [to Dubai] early, I was perfectly prepared, it's just a tough loss tonight.

"So many chances, it was crazy. There are no excuses there," he added.

"I just think it's still the beginning of the comeback and I've got to take the positives out of playing again a tournament where I feel I'm quite healthy, and I'm happy I got over the injury I sustained at the Australian Open."

The Russian, whose career best ranking in 68, which he achieved in 2008 looked relaxed but admitted that he did surprise himself with the result.

"I surprised everyone today, I think whoever wins against Roger surprises himself," Donskoy said.

"I can say it's a dream come true but I don't like this because you always want to win, even if it's Roger."

Andy Murray, meanwhile, is on course for his first title of 2017 after the world number one progressed to the quarter-finals after a dominant 6-2, 6-0 win over Guillermo Garcia-Lopez. The Scot will face Philipp Kohlschreiber in the last eight and is among just three seeded players still remaining in the tournament.