Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Murray beats Zverev at Western and Southern Open

Murray beats Zverev at Western and Southern Open
Andy Murray beats Alexander Zverev at Western and Southern Open

Andy Murray defeated Alexander Zverev 6-3, 3-6, 7-5 at the Western and Southern Open in New York.

Murray took a 4-1 lead after an early break that eventually brought him the first set.

The deciding set found the advantage swinging this way and that. Murray led 4-1 at one stage, but later admitted that he then became nervous, felt fatigued and stopped moving his feet.

Next it was Zverev’s turn for self-sabotage, as he sent down that rash of double-faults when leading 5-4. And finally Murray put himself into the third round with a magnificent backhand return winner. All through the match, he had been pouncing on the Zverev second serve and ramming it back at pace.

Zverev tried to serve the match out in the deciding set, and suffered an ill-timed attack of yips. At one stage, he sent down four double-faults in succession.

“It would have been a tough one to lose,” Murray said. “Throughout my career I have found ways to win against good players when I haven’t necessarily been playing my best tennis. I did that today and that’s a good sign.

“Ideally I would like to play shorter matches and win matches quicker. But I said before the tournament that I wanted matches, and tomorrow” – when he faces Dan Evans’s conqueror Milos Raonic – “should give me a good idea of where my body is at. I would expect to be tired but I will try to push myself hard tomorrow, regardless of the result.”

Murray later emphasised how much he missed the atmosphere that would normally be produced by a full set of stands. “I would way prefer playing with the crowd,” he said.

“I hit a running passing shot winner up the line ... and you get silence! You feed off the crowd. That maybe explains the drop in intensity in a long match like that.”

He also explained that the resumption of official tour matches had done wonders for his form, even without any noise from the sidelines to spur him on further.

"In practice matches I’ve been getting belted by everyone, Murray said. "But practice isn’t the match court. Outwardly I look negative in these matches, but inwardly I always believe I can win. I haven’t lost my competitive instinct. When that goes, it’s time to call it a day.”

Photo from Ap
Info from Yahoo Sports