Andy Murray cruised into the fourth round of the Miami Open at Crandon Park this afternoon, clinically dismantling the slow-court game of Colombia’s Santiago Giraldo in a routine 6-3 6-4 victory.
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Giraldo, who kept knocking imaginary clay from his shoes, has a second serve that’s even slower than Murray’s. With that in mind, both had a similar plan: to inflict GBH on each other’s second deliveries.
The coconut-shy approach went tit-for-tat until the Colombian served at 2-3, when Murray stepped fully three metres inside the court to swipe away some especially poor deliveries from the 27th seed.
From there, the Scot mopped up the set, moving Giraldo from side to side like a pendulum before frequently finessing a point with a dropshot winner.
At the start of the second set, Murray picked up where he left off, tilting full pelt at Giraldo’s tin-can second serve and combating the 27-year-old’s vanilla-flavoured backcourt game with his own patented brand of curried-goat’s-cheese groundshots.
At 5-2, with Murray serving for the match, Giraldo had run out of ideas, but a series of desperate howitzers from the Colombian and a side order of nerves from Murray saw the South American save two match points and stave off a seemingly inevitable defeat.
Giraldo held to keep Murray honest for a second time and the Scot went 40-0 up. The clay-courter still had other ideas, however, and continued to tee off on the third seed’s second delivery. At 40-30, Murray looked relieved when a lucky net cord finally put paid to the contest.
In the last 16, Murray will now take on South Africa’s Kevin Anderson, who beat Leonardo Mayer 6-4 6-4.