Murray keeps Britain hopes alive
Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:02
The British number one was in the feistiest of moods as he defeated Melzer 6-4 5-7 6-4 6-1 in a tough and high-class rubber on Wimbledon’s Court One to square the tie at 2-2.
Britain’s hopes of retaining their status in the world group of 16 elite tennis nations now rest on Alex Bogdanovic beating Austrian number two Alexander Peya later this afternoon in the deciding rubber.
For Murray, victory against Melzer was sweet after the Austrian had upset him by questioning his ability to cope with the pressure earlier this week.
Melzer, ranked 41 in the world, had gone within two points of beating Murray in the third round of the US Open.
And there were times when his all-court game looked capable of causing an upset in front of a partisan Court One crowd.
For most of the first set Murray was in the grumpiest of moods, complaining to French umpire Cedric Maurier that the court in shadow behind the baseline was slippy.
It seemed to prey on his mind and his tennis was erratic, until he dug deep in the sixth game, coming back from 0-40 to strike a psychological blow which saw him take the early advantage.
Melzer took the second set before the pair swapped service breaks at the start of the third and the Austrian was looking increasingly dangerous until the seventh game proved crucial, Murray hanging in and pressuring his opponent with stinging returns to take the vital break of serve on his fifth break point.
The initiative was Murray’s and when he broke Melzer’s serve in the first game of the fourth set the hard work was done.