The great returner up against the powerhouse serve of Ivo Karlovic. It was always going to be a challenging and tough match for Murray and it lived up to expectations. Murray was victorious over the Croatian giant winning 7-5 6-7 6-2 7-6.
The prediction for this match was that both players would hold serve without much trouble; Karlovic from power and Murray from necessity. So it was a great surprise to see first Murray broken in the first game of the match, and more shockingly for him to break the Croatian’s serve in the next game.
However, this was a sight that would be seen rarely in the rest of the match and with a break of serve under their belts in the opening games, both men then settled into the set and held serve for the next few games.
The match seemed to be heading towards an inevitable first set tie-break when a loose service game from Karlovic at 5-4 offered Murray 2 set points, unfortunately the Croatian’s power and serve held off the Brit and kept things on a level setting at 5-5.Read more (408 words)
Murray gave it his all to try and avoid a tie-break against the Croatian goliath and made use of a couple of missed first serves to gain another set point at 6-5. This time he took the point and the set 7-5 after a double fault from Karlovic.
Both players upped their game in the second set and attacked each other’s serves with great intensity.
In the second set Murray began to employ a tactic that few would have predicted, and repeatedly managed to win points with successful lobs over the 6’10 Karlovic!
This match was always going to have at least one tie-break and the second set provided the first of these. With a great degree of flare Karlovic gained the advantage in the tie-break and took the second set, a fact that will sit badly with Murray as he had his opportunities and couldn’t manage to convert them.
Murray put the tie-break behind him quickly and upped the intensity on the Croatian’s serve at the beginning of the set. Another successful lob and he took the break for an early lead in the third set.
The one break seemed all that was necessary but Murray took his chances and applied more pressure on the Croatian’s serve, forcing the break to then serve for the third set. The service game went according to plan and Murray took the third set 6-2.
Karlovic renewed his consistency in the fourth set and the score went with serve, the pressure building for Murray the further on in the set they got.
The match was a brilliant showcase for some amazing rallies from both players, with lobs, drop-shots and passing shots in abundance.
Another tie-break and more nail-baiting moments for Murray fans. However, the nails were saved as Murray got the mini-break in the tie-break and took the set and match in brilliant fashion.
The match lived up to the expectations of being tough, as is always the case against the Croatian and after the match Murray agreed that it was challenging to get into a rhythm against Karlovic. Murray said he had been fairly happy with the way he’d returned and the number of balls he’d gotten the racket to on the Karlovic serve.
Murray has overcome yet another tough competitor in his Wimbledon campaign and we wait with baited breath to see his next match against Marcos Baghdatis and what better form the Brit will produce as he progresses.