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Opponents dish the dirt on Murray

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:31

Murray, the third seed, has made the fourth round at Roland Garros for the first time in his career and it seems he is finally getting to grips with the dirt – by far his least favourite surface.

In-form 13th seed Marin Cilic, Murray’s opponent in the fourth round, said: “He’s one of the better movers on tour so it’s really tough to play him because he always gets another ball back. I also think he’s pretty smart on court. He reads the game well and takes advantage of what he sees can help him. He’s also serving well.”

He added: “So you need to be consistent and physically strong to maintain your power and to maintain your consistency when you play him.”

The British number one has lost just one set in the first three rounds, which have seen him overcome Juan Ignacio Chela, Potito Starace and Janko Tipsarevic.

Tipsarevic was forced to retire midway through his third-round clash with Murray, the Serb failing to recover from a hamstring problem he sustained early in the match.

He was 7-6 (7/3) 6-3 down when he threw in the towel but even when carrying an injury, he was 5-2 ahead in the first set and squandered two set points.

Despite feeling his hamstring complaint cost him a great chance of upsetting Murray, the world number 65 was effusive in his praise of the Scot.

“We’re talking about a guy who is making the minimum amount of errors on the slowest surface in the world,” Tipsarevic said. “In my opinion, he’s the best defender on tour and has the best passing shot on tour. He’s not (Rafael) Nadal, but he’s still a great player on clay.

“The most difficult thing is that he’s playing the right shots in the important moments. It’s probably because of the confidence he has got in the last couple of months – he makes you play that extra shot when another guy on tour will not do that.”

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