Murray's sprint finish after Miami marathon

By for MurraysWorld.com on
In a paralysing, pulverising encounter in the searing Florida heat, Andy Murray saved a match point with a groundshot to the very limits of the white lines to claim his second Miami Masters title.

After a meandering three hours of service breaks, missed chances and scintillating winners, the Scot edged David Ferrer 2-6 6-4 7-6 to wrest not only his ninth Masters title but also the world number two spot.

As the first set got under way, such a result looked about as likely as the diminutive Spaniard letting go of the dog-pull he seemingly has between his teeth as he grunts his way through baseline rallies measured to the inch. The Duracell Easter Bunny reeled off five straight games as Murray struggled to locate some semblance of timing.

Despite his 20 titles, Ferrer’s career has largely been built on vulturing lower-ranked players. The Spaniard has never won a title match against a top-five player and he faltered when Murray held for 5-1 and snapped off a smart volley and scorching forehand to make it 5-2.

However, the eighth game proved a sorry microcosm of the first set for Murray, who hit two double faults, netted a tame forehand and drove another beyond the baseline to surrender the opener.

The second set proved transitional for Murray. Caught between limited success when hitting vanilla-flavoured rally balls, yet constantly frustrated by poor timing when he tried to add some spice, Murray gradually felt his way into the match and secured a neat break at 1-1 with a forehand error from the Spaniard’s racket.

Murray kept the initiative until 4-3, but the 27-degree heat was taking its toll, with the Scot gasping for air in the Miami cauldron and generally looking like he’d rather be preparing his end-of-year tax return than facing a one-man energy source in a Masters final.

Somehow, the number two seed broke again at 4-4 and some huge serving and tactically astute groundshots secured the second set.

Six successive service breaks at the start of the decider indicated maximum exhaustion on the part of both players, who might have felt aggrieved at having to play their first match of the week in the midday sun, a result of TV schedules organised around a hectic basketball programme in the US.

With his fuel light not only on amber but also beginning to flash and beep, the Scot just did enough to manufacture a break at 4-4. But some attritional play from Ferrer levelled matters at 5-5.

At 5-6 down, Murray staggered to 40-15 but the gritty Spaniard pulled back to deuce and engineered a championship point. Murray drove recklessly deep to Ferrer’s forehand corner and the new world number four immediately challenged. In a rising crescendo of agitation, the crowd held its breath as Hawkeye confirmed that Murray’s drive had painted the very back edge of Ferrer’s baseline.

The near miss seemed to galvanise the Scot into action. Now his feet were moving, he was split-stepping with authority and pounding his shots. The Scot took matters into a deciding tiebreak and suddenly sprinted to victory, getting the best of a tricky net cord and then grinding his way to a 7-1 success and a position as the undisputed number two player on the planet.
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It wasn't pretty but Andy got there in the end trophy

Very hard luck David hug You're such a fighter.

Now to my least favourite tennis surface Rolling Eyes
March 31, 2013, 07:36 PM
By Bevc

Great stuff Andy
March 31, 2013, 07:47 PM
By sanderic

Meander is totally the wrong word, but I know what you're getting at.   Takes the black route, more like.
March 31, 2013, 07:48 PM
By Fiverings

Weirdest match ever !!

I lost my internet connection on match point to Ferrer - only to get it back a few minutes later with Andy on 5 MP's !!! I was sure our guy had lost. 
Well done though to Andy on winning the battle of wills - as he said in his interview, I;m sure he would have lost that match a couple of years back.

I also take back what I said pre-match about Ferrer being ancient - well, he is, lol, but he still seems to have bionic legs and a heart of steel - well played David !

And to Andy, 9th masters, 26th title and world no,2 !  Good lad ! Now,go and get that serve sorted out !
March 31, 2013, 07:50 PM
By sidtypical

Weirdest match ever !!

I lost my internet connection on match point to Ferrer - only to get it back a few minutes later with Andy on 5 MP's !!! I was sure our guy had lost. 


Wow Sid! I would have gone crazy if that happened to me.
March 31, 2013, 07:53 PM
By Sabine

Wow Sid! I would have gone crazy if that happened to me.

Yeah Sabine, i did !!
I swear, I thought about just switching off - afraid to witness what I thought was an inevitable loss, given Andy's loss of 4 breaks. Just felt like one of those days. It wasn''t ! yay
March 31, 2013, 07:56 PM
By sidtypical

I think the Title should be 'BRAVE HEART WINS THE BATTLE AGAINST THE SPANISH.' Meander does not give a true picture of a match played in brutal conditions...heat, humidity and wind.
Thought Andy showed why he is a Champion and got the win through sheer determination, even though he was dead on his feet, his courage got him through. I am so proud of him, hope he has a good rest for the next 4 days, before he gets ready for the clay courts. hug trophy cheers
March 31, 2013, 07:59 PM
By michelle

 w00t  nervous  pray  clap  Think  doh Super Fingers crossed thumb up unsure Jumping w00t bounce duh fool Anxious Very Happy yes  trophy  kicking Woof!
March 31, 2013, 08:07 PM
By adb..OH

I think the Title should be 'BRAVE HEART WINS THE BATTLE AGAINST THE SPANISH.' Meander does not give a true picture of a match played in brutal conditions...heat, humidity and wind.
Thought Andy showed why he is a Champion and got the win through sheer determination, even though he was dead on his feet, his courage got him through. I am so proud of him, hope he has a good rest for the next 4 days, before he gets ready for the clay courts. hug trophy cheers

I agree Michelle:
the most pleasing aspect is that Andy, struggling to gain any cheap points on serve, still managed to out fight the king of the street fighters ! A real champion !
March 31, 2013, 08:09 PM
By sidtypical

Number 2 and the title!  clap second Super

Congrats Andy!!

Nole and Andy at the top... FINALLY!!  w00t
March 31, 2013, 08:09 PM
By janetx

Meander is totally the wrong word, but I know what you're getting at.   Takes the black route, more like.

OK, I changed it.
March 31, 2013, 08:15 PM
By Grabcopy

Good report as always.  God, I still feel sick!  I tried to keep positive all the way through and it was hard.  Felt for Ferrer at the end and all credit to both of them to slug it out in those conditions, I was exhausted just looking at them.  I said on another thread that the semi finals were always more exciting than the final.........I take it all back.  Congratulations to Andy now for the red stuff!
March 31, 2013, 08:17 PM
By Iris

Sooooooooooo proud of him. What a fight I am exhausted goodness knows how Andy feels.

Mind you part of me also feels a bit sad for ferrer he played a great match.
March 31, 2013, 08:17 PM
By Tessie

Hair pulled out by the roots, burnt turkey dinner.

All worth it.

Well done, Andy. You showed them all you have the mental edge when the chips are down.

Could not be more prouder of you.  clap clap clap
March 31, 2013, 08:18 PM
By scotnadian

One of the toughest wins of Andy's career. Many congratulations!

March 31, 2013, 08:18 PM
By John Macnab

Cant wait for the full report.

Good sense of humour Nigel... "Meanders", yeah sure he did.  roflmao

What can one say about that match? Surely its defies description?
March 31, 2013, 08:20 PM
By lashurst

OK, I changed it.
  Cheers Nigel, new headline much better!
March 31, 2013, 08:20 PM
By Fiverings

It may not have been a skilful match, but it was thrilling and entertaining in turns.

For the first time ever in such an important match, though, I always had faith that he would pull through. 
March 31, 2013, 08:24 PM
By Tasmanian Devil

Cant wait for the full report.

Good sense of humour Nigel... "Meanders", yeah sure he did.  roflmao

What can one say about that match? Surely its defies description?
I don't get this 'how did he win'.  It's what great players do - they don't necessarily trounce opponents, but they find a way to win, through sheer inner strength and fortitude.  Great win for Murray.
March 31, 2013, 08:25 PM
By Elly

Great match report Nigel as always.  What a weird and compelling match.  Andy won by sheer guts and determination,.  As he himself said he wouldn't have done a couple of years ago. Couldn't help but feel sorry for Ferrer  - well not THAT sorry. 
Sign of a real champion to win a major when playing far from best.  Onwards and upwards Andy   yay yay yay [can't compete with adb on emoticons -wonderful display!]
March 31, 2013, 08:27 PM
By Ruthie

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