Murray in semis after crushing Lopez
World number four Andy Murray eased into his third successive Wimbledon semifinal with an emphatic 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 victory against Spain's Feliciano Lopez on Wednesday.sports Updated: Jun 29, 2011 23:56 IST
World number four Andy Murray eased into his third successive Wimbledon semifinal with an emphatic 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 victory against Spain's Feliciano Lopez on Wednesday.
Murray, who has lost in the semifinals for the last two years, is bidding to become the first British winner of the Wimbledon men's singles title since Fred Perry in 1936.
The 24-year-old remains on course to end 75 years of British misery at the All England Club after demolishing Lopez in just over two hours on Centre Court.
Murray has now reached seven Grand Slam semifinals, more than any other British man in the Open era, but that will count for nothing if he fails to become the first British male finalist here since Bunny Austin in 1938.
To do that the two-time Australian Open runner-up will have to get past world number one Rafael Nadal or America's Mardy Fish in the last four.
"I think Feliciano was a little tired and was struggling with his movement. I'm playing well but I will be pushed more and more in the next matches and I know I will have to up my game," said Murray.
By his own admission, Murray made an underwhelming start to the tournament, but he gave a grasscourt masterclass in his straight sets win over Richard Gasquet in the fourth round and Lopez was treated with equal disdain.
Lopez had defeated three-times finalist Andy Roddick in the third round before recovering from two sets down to beat Lukasz Kubot in five sets in the last 16.
But Murray had won all four of their previous encounters and it wasn't long before he stamped his authority on the fifth.
Murray denied Lopez any chance to find his rhythm before converting his third break point to move 4-2 ahead.
Murray finished off the first set in dominant style and was back on top in the second when he broke in the fifth game after Lopez netted a volley.
World number 44 Lopez has attracted plenty of attention over the last fortnight for his latin good looks, with Murray's mother Judy even moved to dub him "Deliciano" on Twitter.
But it was Murray's sublime shot-making that caught the eye on Centre Court and, with his serve working equally well, he eased into a two-set lead with the minimum fuss.
Murray took time out from his preparations for this match to chat with golfer Rory McIlroy, who recently won his first major at the US Open, and this was every bit as composed and clinical a display as his fellow Briton gave on the fairways at Congressional.
By now it was clear that Lopez, who called for treatment on his knee early in the third set, had no answer to Murray's searing returns.
The knock-out blow arrived in the fifth game of the third set as Murray broke again before serving out the win.
First Published: Jun 29, 2011 23:53 IST