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HindustanTimes Sat,12 Jul 2014

Tennis

Unscathed Murray into Wimbledon third round
AFP
London, June 26, 2013
First Published: 23:25 IST(26/6/2013)
Last Updated: 23:27 IST(26/6/2013)

Andy Murray emerged unscathed on a day of astonishing injury mayhem at Wimbledon as the world number two eased into the third round with a 6-3, 6-3, 7-5 win over Taiwan's Lu Yen-Hsun.

Murray was never threatened by Lu's lightweight game and the US Open champion breezed through in two hours, in the process avenging an embarrassing defeat against the world number 75 at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

While Murray would never admit it publicly, he would also have been pleased with the news from the Wimbledon treatment table, with French sixth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Croatian 10th seed Marin Cilic among the victims of an incredible run of injury withdrawals on Wednesday.

Tsonga and Cilic were Murray's most likely quarter-final opponents, but instead the highest ranked player left in the Scot's quarter is now Russian 20th seed Mikhail Youzhny.

As others were bemoaning the condition of the slippery All England Club courts, Murray kept his head and his footing, hitting 41 winners and serving 11 aces, to set up a last 32 clash with Spanish 32nd seed Tommy Robredo.

"I thought I kept my concentration well on serve and gave him very few opportunities after the first set," Murray said.

"Each game I was putting a lot of pressure on his service games.

"If you can you want to win in three sets. It's been a good start I'll try and keep it going."

Murray made history on Monday when he defeated Germany's Benjamin Becker to become the most successful British man in Grand Slam history as he surpassed Fred Perry's total of 106 matches won at the four majors.

But he has another more significant Perry achievement in his sights however as he bids to end Britain's 77-year wait for a male winner of the Wimbledon singles title and he looks in the mood to do just that after extending his winning run on grass to 13 matches.

Murray has enjoyed a remarkable time since last year's tearful Wimbledon final defeat against Roger Federer, thrashing the Swiss great to win the gold medal at the London Olympics and then beating Novak Djokovic in the US Open final to finally claim his first Grand Slam crown.

The 26-year-old had reached the final of the last three Grand Slams before the recent French Open, which he was forced to miss with a back injury and, yet to drop a set in his opening two matches, few would bet against a fourth successive final appearance.

As the only serious British contender at Wimbledon over the last few years, Murray has grown accustomed to being scheduled on Centre Court, so he could have been forgiving for being a little disorientated when he stepped out on Court One to face Lu.

But, after saving three break points in the fifth game, Murray landed the first break for a 4-2 lead before serving out the first set.

Lu, a Wimbledon quarter-finalist in 2010, had beaten another Briton, James Ward, in the previous round, but his forlorn body language suggested he knew his chances of frustrating the host nation once again were slipping away.

Murray kept the pressure on Lu, unleashing a powerful return of serve that forced a wayward forehand and secured a break in the first game of the second set as the Scot easily moved into a two-set lead.

Even when Lu started hitting out midway through the third set, Murray came up with a pair of stunning winners to subdue the uprising and eventually sealed the win on his third match point.


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