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Andy Murray secures Wimbledon win over fellow Brit Liam Broady

Andy through against fellow Brit Broady with minimum of fuss before heavens open

By Paul Newman

Published 29/06/2016

Job done: Andy Murray on the way to victory over Liam Broady at Wimbledon yesterday
Job done: Andy Murray on the way to victory over Liam Broady at Wimbledon yesterday

Andy Murray's timing is usually immaculate and the world No 2 could hardly have bettered it as he completed a 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 first-round victory here over Liam Broady.

Within minutes of the two Britons walking off Centre Court, the covers were being pulled across the grass as rain started to fall. Thanks to the sliding roof two more matches were played, but on every other court that was it for the day.

Given his experiences at the recent French Open, where he may have eventually paid a price for being drawn into long five-set matches in the first two rounds, Murray was pleased to have been more efficient here.

He usually is: this was his fifth successive straight-sets win in the first round at the All England Club.

"At any tournament it's important, when you have a chance to win a match quickly, to do it," Murray said after earning a second-round meeting with Taiwan's Yen-Hsun Lu.

"It's not always that easy. Sometimes your opponents can play very well, and sometimes you're struggling a little bit, but when you have the opportunity in matches to finish them, you have to try and be ruthless. I'm happy I got done in three sets."

This was the first all-British meeting in the men's singles at a Grand Slam tournament since Tim Henman beat Greg Rusedski in the first round of the US Open 10 years ago.

It was the first at Wimbledon since 2001, when Henman beat Martin Lee in the second round and Barry Cowan beat Mark Hilton in the first.

Murray, remarkably, had never faced a fellow Briton on home soil until he played Aljaz Bedene and Kyle Edmund in successive rounds in the Aegon Championships at Queen's Club earlier this month.

The Scot was pleased with his form. "I hit the ball pretty clean," he said. "I think offensively was good. I felt like I could have moved a little bit better and I didn't defend as well as usual, but I served well. That was pleasing. I got a lot of free points on my serve. I served a pretty high percentage.

"Especially in the first two sets, I didn't give him many chances on my serve. When I was in difficult situations, I served well."

Broady was surprised that he had not felt more nervous.

"I felt at home from the start," he said. "I didn't play like I was at home from the start, but I certainly felt like it. I think the longer the match went on, the more I focused on the tennis and stopped remembering where I was. By the end of the second and most of the third, it was just a match against another guy."

He added: "The more I played, the more comfortable I got with it, the better I played. I started to hit my forehand better, started to get more free points off that. I started to serve better. Obviously Andy is the second best player in the world, and on his day, the best player in the world. That's why he won in straight sets."

What had Murray said to him at the end? "We shook hands and he said: 'Good fight, well played.' I said the same to him. He's a great guy. I do like him a lot. It's not nice having to play him.

"At the end we were walking off the court and he asked me if I enjoyed it. I was like: 'Yeah, of course I did.' I played Andy Murray on Centre Court. What can't I enjoy?

"Obviously, I didn't enjoy the losing part, but it was a great experience."

Lu, Murray's next opponent, beat Russia's Alexander Kudryavtsev 6-4, 6-1, 6-4.

Murray has won his last three meetings with Lu but lost at the Beijing Olympics eight years ago.

Belfast Telegraph

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