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A Murray victory in the mixed doubles

by William Denny
Thursday 3 July 2014

Murray’s name was back in lights on the Centre Court scoreboard, this time in the form of doubles specialist Jamie.

The Scot, partnered with Australian Casey Dellacqua recorded a 7-5, 6-3 win over Horia Tecau and Sania Mirza in the mixed doubles third round.

The Brit-Aussie pair were called into some early defence as they fended off opening game break points. Seemingly behind in the rally, some determined chasing and accurate approach play ensured a crucial hold. But they would soon be undone as Tecau and Mirza’s timely break shifted the impetus towards the No.6 seeds.

But, the first set took another twist as Murray, the 2007 mixed doubles champion, and Dellacqua, a three time Grand Slam finalist in 2013, broke back with clever variety and precise finishing. With the ascendency now with the No.10 seeds, they confidently broke in the twelfth game to love, securing a one-set advantage.

In truth, Murray and Dellacqua, who were eliminated in the first round at Roland Garros, looked to be enjoying life on Centre Court together with smiles and high-fives a constant throughout the match as they raced into a 4-1 lead in the second set. The potential turning point came in the seventh game as the Romanian-Indian pairing missed a third break point of the set before Dellacqua’s inch-perfect lob moved them to within one set of victory. Murray, 28, then served the winning game to love as Mirza fired beyond the baseline.

“I loved it,” said Murray. “I’ve been fortunate to play a few times and I have to make the most of it because for me, all I wanted to do when I was growing up was play Wimbledon, play at Centre Court. It was good fun, a lot of exciting rallies; the crowd seemed to get really into it.”

Murray and Dellacqua will now face No.14 seeds Max Mirnyi and Hao-Ching Chan in the final eight. “It will be a tough match,” added Murray. “He’s (Mirnyi) been a great player for a long time and a really good mixed player as well. Any team that we’re going to play now is going to be difficult.”

Meanwhile, on No.1 Court, Neal Skupski and Naomi Broady won a captivating battle against Florin Mergea and Elina Svitolina. The all-British pairing were made to wait by their opponents, prolonging the agony of the home support, before they finally struck the winner on the 11th match point.

“I think we were a bit nervous in the first set but we started to go for it in the second and third and it paid off,” said Skupski. “There is a lot we can work on in practice tomorrow morning before we play again. I think we’ll be ready for tomorrow because we’ve got that No.1 Court experience.” 

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