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Murray survives Muller to reach Queen’s Club semis


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Andy Murray is through to the semi-finals of the Aegon Championships as he battled past Gilles Muller 3-6 7-6 6-4. The Brit made a slow start as Muller took the first set, but Murray responded to win the tie-break and eventually ground down the worlds 48th ranked player to secure the victory.

In the opening set, Muller quickly imposed himself, dominating with his massive first serve and exceptional net play to pressurise Murray. The Brit was very much off balance due to Muller’s deep hitting, and it soon paid off for the man from Luxembourg as he broke Murray to gain the advantage. The Brit forced break points in the following game, but Muller’s serve continued to be impenetrable and he went on to eventually close out the first set 6-3.

However, Murray was rarely troubled on serve in the second set, as he kept the score line tight but he still was unable to find a way past the Muller serve. The set went to a tie-break, but the Brit raised his level as a scintillating forehand passing shot down the line set him on his way to a 4-0 lead. Muller never recovered as Murray was dominant in the tie-break, taking the match to a third set when his opponent netted a slice.

Murray continued his momentum in the deciding set, punishing Muller for dropping his first serve percentage as the Brit produced a series of powerful returns to earn the early break. Muller was on the ropes and stared down the possibility of a double break deficit as Murray created further opportunities, but Muller again found his big serve to survive. Despite Muller keeping the deficit to just the one break, Murray comfortably maintained the lead and successfully served out the match to move into the semi-finals.

Murray will go on to face Viktor Troicki, as the Serbian beat John Isner 7-6 6-3.

In the other quarter-finals, Kevin Anderson beat Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 7-6 7-5 to move into his first semi-final at the Aegon Championships. The South African produced his best tennis at the latter stages of both sets to beat the Spaniard. The opening set needed a tiebreak, but it was Anderson who took the initiative, somehow recovering a deep volley to place an immaculate lob over his opponent. This gave Anderson a set point, and he converted it when Garcia Lopez placed a passing shot wide. The second set saw the Spaniard create early break points, but Anderson survived with some heavy serving. Both players held serve relatively easy from that point on, but leading 6-5, Anderson raised his level to break Garcia Lopez and as a result complete the win.

The South African will play Gilles Simon in the next round. The Frenchman edged Milos Raonic 4-6 6-3 7-5. The Canadian capitalised on an early break to seal the first set and had a break point in the second, but Simon saved it with an incredible lob. The Frenchman went on to hold that service game and utilised his momentum to break Raonic. He then clinched the second set to take the match to a decider. The third set was a much closer affair, but Simon was making more returns and extending the rallies in his favour. The durable Frenchman finally made the breakthrough at 5-5, outlasting the Canadian to serve for the match. Simon was forced to deuce, but an impeccable backhand winner down the line sealed the hard-fought win.

Aegon Championships

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