As much a terrier as the likes of David Ferrer, Simon is well known for his tenacity and metronomic ability to return the majority of tennis shots.
So although the scoreline suggests a second and third set breeze for Murray after a pesky first set reverse, this was in fact a match that was in severe danger of getting away from him at more than one point in proceedings.
After he broke the Simon serve in the very first game of the match, Murray’s fans would have been forgiven for thinking that this would be a routine win and another step on the road to the possible number one ranking.
Murray is looking to close the rankings gap on Novak Djokovic in his bid to become world number 1 for the first time in his career. This tournament offers 500 ranking points, so winning the title would be a valuable step in the right direction.
Klizan, ranked 35, earned three break points to start the match but Murray was able to avert the danger and hold serve.
Murray turned the tables in the fourth game, breaking serve to take a 3-1 lead and later claiming the set in 42 minutes.
The top seed broke again to start the second set and looked to be heading for a routine victory serving at...
In doing so he edged closer to Novak Djokovic in the world rankings, and now has an outside shot of wrestling the number one spot from the Serb before the end of the year.
Murray cruised for much of the first set, dominating on serve before breaking Agut in the sixth game. The world number two wobbled briefly when he failed to serve for the set after being 40-15, 5-4 up. The wobble was brief however, and Murray stopped the rot by slamming down three consecutive aces to force a tiebreak. The Brit then upped his game further and dominated the breaker, taking the set with a crushing cross court return.
Matches between these two tend to be grinding attritional affairs, and so it was for much of the first set. Murray started slowly, dropping serve for the first time all tournament. The world number two regained the break for 2-2, an act which signalling the start of six consecutive breaks of serve. Murray claimed the decisive break, running back to hit a pinpoint backhand lob on set point.
The second set was a smoother affair as Murray raced into a 5-1 lead. Simon resisted briefly, regaining one of the breaks as Murray attempted to serve...
Despite landing only 46% of his first serves overall, Murray won 95% of those that did find their target.
The British world number 2 took a 4-0 lead in the first set, but only after fending off a chance for Pouille in the very first game.
The second set started in similarly disheartening fashion for the Frenchman as Murray's commanding form saw him break again.
Pouille stayed in touch for a while but was unable to prevent Murray from breaking for a final time to claim the win.
This was, overall, a dominant display from Murray, though he will want to sharpen up his first serve as the business end o...
Murray was effective on serve, winning 79% of his first serve points and 61% on his notably improved second serve delivery. He targeted Johnson's second serve, pressuring the American on return.
The world number 2 had to save a break point in the opening game but was otherwise untroubled on serve.
Johnson, ranked 24, staved off a break point of his own in the fourth game but succumbed to love in his next service game to go down 2-4. Murray then went on to close out the set with ease.
The Brit was able to break in the third game of the second set to go up 2-1. A further break in Johnson's n...
Andy Murray: the Man in the Arena