Murray to face Viktor Troicki in last 16
Originally published on: 26/02/10 15:49
The pair has met once before in 2008 in the first round at St. Petersburg. Muzza won in straight sets 6-3, 6-3.
The world No.41 could put up a good show against the Scot. Although he had a relatively easy win over the German Bjorn Phau to progress to the fourth round, the right hander emphatically defeated the No.14 seed David Nalbandian 6-2, 6-1 in the second round.
While Murray, by virtue of a bye, had his feet up in the first round Troicki was out on the purple courts defeating the Frenchman Nicolas Devilder 6-2, 6-3.
Muzza recognises that his opponent is playing well. Commenting after his third round defeat of Massu he said: He obviously had a very good win against Nalbandian. He played well last year I think, as well. You know hes quick and hes got a big serve.
Murrays thoughts on his tactics: Ill have to play solid and choose my moments to be aggressive. Try and change the pace of the ball. Because if you keep playing the same way against him hes very solid. Ill have to do that.
Although at 23 years old Troicki is older than Murray, he only turned pro in 2006 and is enjoying his highest ranking to date. He is having a run of form coming into this tournament. At Indian Wells he beat Mikhail Youzhny (for the record he retired), Tomas Berdych and was then defeated by Nalbandian.
He has also had some good career matches under his belt. After qualifying for the Aussie Open in 2008 he took Rafa to a tiebreak in the first set of their first round match at the Australian Open in 2008.
He also had a tight three-set match with Andy Roddick at this event last year again having qualified. Its wins that count though and apart from a victory over Andy Roddick in Washington in the US Series last year, Troicki has never beaten a top 20 player.
So Muzza is of course the favourite. The Scot will need to raise the level of his play at this tournament and maintain his concentration if hes to have a convincing victory against the plucky Serb.
With the potential for a quarter-final against Fernando Verdasco here it could be a good time to come to form, not wishing Muzza to peak too early.
The match is scheduled to be the second match on Grandstand court. Play starts at 11am local time.
For the ATP Tour head-to-head stats between Andy Murray and Viktor Troicki click here.