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Murray: path to the final

Andy Murray with a running forehand.
by Helen Gilbert
Sunday 7 July 2013

It’s been a stellar 12 months for Andy Murray. Winner of gold and silver medals at the London Olympics, a first Grand Slam at the US Open and now in his second successive Wimbledon final. We look at his route to the final

First Round – [2] Andy Murray defeated Benjamin Becker 6-4, 6-3, 6-2

It was his first appearance at SW19 since winning gold and silver at the London Olympics and Andy Murray didn’t disappoint the British fans as he strolled out to a standing ovation. Murray had dispatched Becker straight sets the week before in the quarter-finals of Queen’s and this time took just one hour and 53 minutes to brush aside his German opponent.

Second round – Murray defeated Yen-Hsun Lu 6-3, 6-3, 7-5
Murray was prepared for a challenge from the man from Chinese Taipei, who  made a name for himself when he reached the quarter-finals here in 2010 after beating Andy Roddick. In addition, Yen-Hsun had beaten Murray in the first round of the Beijing Olympics in 2008. However, the Scot got his revenge with a straight-sets victory in Indian Wells this year and followed with an equally impressive performance here. Meanwhile, talk centred on how Murray’s side of the draw had opened up following the exits of Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Marin Cilic.

Third round – Murray defeated Tommy Robredo 6-2, 6-4, 7-5
On paper the match up with the No.32 seed had the potential to be tricky affair but as Murray breezed through his third match without dropping a set. It took the Scot just two hours and one minute to see off the Spaniard, the same length of time he spent on court in the previous round. The victory took his winning streak on grass to 14. Murray admitted there was a lot more pressure on him with Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal being out of the draw, but added: “You need to be professional enough not to let the papers and stuff bother you and just concentrate on each match."

Fourth round – Murray defeated Mikhail Youzhny 6-4, 7-6 (5), 6-1
Another straight sets victor,  this time over the Russian No.20 seed and former world No.8. Despite being broken twice in the second set, Murray served a total of 15 aces against the 2012 Wimbledon quarter-finalist, and generated 46 winners. On a day that saw defending ladies' champion Serena Williams knocked out the draw, Murray wasn’t taking anything for granted. “She doesn’t lose particularly often. Roger lost, Rafa lost – all these guys and girls are better than me and if they can lose, so can I,” he said.

Quarter-finals – Murray defeated Fernando Verdasco 4-6, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4, 7-5
Murray had warned the tussle against the Spaniard wouldn’t be easy and for the first time of the Championships the nerves of Murray supporters were tested when the man from Dunblane was required to come back from two sets down to defeat the former world No.7 in a dramatic match lasting three hours and 27 minutes. 

Semi finals – Murray defeated Jerzy Janowicz 6-7(2), 6-4, 6-4, 6-3
Murray advanced to the finals of The Championships for the second time in his career but required four sets to do it. Leading the 6ft 8in Pole two sets to one, he wasn’t impressed when a decision was made to close the roof due to fading light. He argued his case, but his protests fell on deaf ears and the roof was closed. It didn’t matter to the end result. One set later the match was Murray's and he’d set up a meeting with Novak Djokovic in the final.

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