Wimbledon: Murray ready to go through the gears
Andy Murray knows the real business of Wimbledon 2011 starts today when he takes on veteran Croatian Ivan Ljubicic for a place in the fourth round.
The fourth seed's aim for his first two matches against Daniel Gimeno-Traver and Tobias Kamke was to get through as comfortably as possible, and he managed that reasonably well, dropping only one set.
Ljubicic is likely to pose a significantly greater threat, however.
The 32-year-old looked to be on a downward spiral when he dropped out of the top 70 two years ago, but instead he found some of the best form of his career.
At the Indian Wells Masters in the spring of 2010, the former world number three won the biggest title of his career and a first-round win over Marin Cilic here served notice of the threat he could pose to Murray.
The British number one said: “The pressure is nicer in some ways once you manage to get through a round or two.
“Now you're not necessarily expected to win the matches easily. The matches are going to get very tough.
“I play Ljubicic now. I've lost to him a few times, he's a tough player. I expect it to be a difficult match. Hopefully I can raise my game for that one.”
The pair have met six times and are currently tied at 3-3, with Ljubicic having won their most recent match in Beijing last year for the loss of only five games.
The Croatian has never made the fourth round at Wimbledon, but Murray sees no reason why he cannot prosper on the grass.
The 24-year-old said: “He serves well. That always makes it difficult.
“His best results haven't been on grass, which is surprising for someone that serves like him.”