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Sir Alex Ferguson looks on as fellow Scot Andy Murray puts on a united front for home crowd

By Eleanor Crooks

Sir Alex Ferguson looked on with pride as fellow Scot Andy Murray served up a thrilling comeback victory over Spain's Fernando Verdasco akin to one of his great nights with Manchester United.

Murray came back from the brink to snatch a place in the semi-finals with his own version of Fergie time, winning 4-6 3-6 6-1 6-4 7-5 on a raucous Centre Court.

Murray, who will meet giant Pole Jerzy Janowicz in the last four tomorrow, felt his previous experience of extricating himself from such situations had played a part.

Asked if he thought it was similar to United winning in Fergie time, he said: " Yeah, I think when you play more and more matches and gain more experience you understand how to turn matches around and how to change the momentum of games.

"That can be tactical; sometimes it can be your opponent. But, you know, often you need to be the one making the change. Maybe when I was younger, you know, I could have lost that match.

"The more times you're in those positions and the more times you can come back, you understand the way you need to think and the way you need to negotiate your way through the last few sets. I did a good job with that."

Murray played poorly in the second set and admitted he feared he was on the way out.

He said: "You're obviously concerned. You're more concerned about losing the match, not thinking so much that I'm going to lose at Wimbledon.

"I definitely didn't rush when I went two sets to love down. I slowed myself down, if anything, and that was a good sign."

The 26-year-old denied tension was a factor in his second-set slump, saying: "I didn't think I started the match nervously.

"I thought I started the match well. I played a good first set. I created quite a few chances on his serve. I maybe didn't play the best game when I got broken, but he also did come up with some good stuff. But in the second set, again, I was up 3-1. I wasn't nervous a set down and 3-1 up."

Murray had not dropped a set during the tournament prior to yesterday and the Centre Court crowd rose to the occasion when their man needed them.

The noise peaked in the fifth set, and Murray said: "I love it when it's like that. It was extremely noisy. They were right into it pretty much every single point. That's what you remember."

Murray, meanwhile, laughed off suggestions he could have become a victim of the so-called 'Curse of Cameron' after receiving a good luck Tweet from David Cameron yesterday. The Prime Minister was present at a number of British sporting disappointments during the Olympics last summer and sent Laura Robson a message before her defeat by Kaia Kanepi on Monday.

Murray said: "It's nice to get messages from the Prime Minister but, whether I win or not, his Tweet has no bearing on that at all."

It was a tough loss for Verdasco, who felt the British crowd proved the difference.

The 29-year-old said: "I think it's clear that the crowd helped him today. It's the same everywhere you go, if you have home advantage, it gives you another five to 10 percent."

Belfast Telegraph


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