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Murray reaches second round in Dubai

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 13:07

The third seed, playing his first match since the Australian Open final, beat the Russian qualifier, ranked a lowly 90th in the world, 6-2 6-3 in one hour 41 minutes.

The British number one took almost a month off following his exertions in Melbourne, where he lost to Roger Federer in the showpiece, opting not to defend his title in Rotterdam – which cost him his world number three ranking – and then pulling out of the event in Marseille, much to the displeasure of the tournament organisers.

And, while not at his best, Murray, who has reached the quarter-finals on both his previous appearances in Dubai, was rarely tested on his return to the court.

Murray fired down 13 aces, but only managed 52% of first serves in – 60% in the first and just 45% in the second.

Murray broke to go 2-0 up after a mammoth second game, eventually closing out the game at the ninth time of asking, and from there never looked in serious trouble.

Kunitsyn got on the board to make it 3-1 but Murray broke again at 5-2, bringing up set point with a booming forehand before his opponent went long, to take the opening set.

The Scot dropped his serve in the first game of the second, handing it to Kunitsyn with a double fault. Murray broke straight back, though, and again to go 4-2 in front.

And the Scot saved a break point courtesy of an un-returned first serve before closing out the second set 6-3.

In the second round Murray will face either Andreas Seppi or Janko Tipsarevic, who play on Tuesday.

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