Andy Murray is through to the quarter-finals of the French Open after completing a truly sensational comeback to defeat Viktor Troicki, 4-6 4-6 6-3 6-2 7-5.
After bad light stopped play yesterday with the scores locked at two sets all, today's decider was always going to be a cagey affair. In many ways the set was a microcosm of the entire match. An initially passive Murray spurned multiple break points before sliding to an entirely predictable break in the sixth game. The furious Scot fashioned another break point in Troicki's next service game but was unable to convert, leaving the Serb one game from an improbable victory.
Since his defeat at the Australian Open, Murray has frequently folded when serving to stay in a match. A solid hold at least avoided that ignominy, but as Troicki eased into a 30-0 lead serving for the match even the most fanatical of Murray supporters could see the writing on the wall. Read more (164 words)
Thankfully Murray was still convinced he could win and belatedly decided to up the aggression. After a brutal Scottish forehand levelled the scores at 30-30, the enormity of what was about to occur finally seeped into Troickis mind and he promptly froze. One limp backhand into the net and a tragic attempted dropshot later and the break advantage was erased.
Murray could now sense victory and after levelling the scores to 5-5 tightened his grip further. Troicki imploded and it was now his opponents turn to serve for the match. Despite being pegged back to 40-40 from a 40-0 lead, Murray held firm and sealed victory with a trademark rasping cross-court passing shot.
This match showed Murray at his best and at his worst - from ultra aggressive, icy calm, winner hitting machine, to gurning, swearing passive mediocrity. This match bore more than a passing similarity to previous Wimbledon encounters with Wawrinka and Gasquet and may, perhaps, herald another chapter in Murray's rollercoaster career.