Murray too good for Lopez

By for on
Andy Murray overcame Feliciano Lopez today, 6-4 6-4, to reach the quarter-finals of the Barcelona Open.

This was Murray's first match of the week following a first round bye and then Bernard Tomic's withdrawal gifting a second round walkover.

However, given that Murray took a late wildcard opportunity here with the aim of sharpening his overall game following injury, the delayed entry to the action in Catalonia would likely have been a source of frustration rather than satisfaction.

Murray had beaten Lopez in all ten of their encounters on the ATP tour prior to today's clash, a run which stretches back to the Washington DC hardcourts in the summer of 2006.

The Spanish veteran would not break the hoodoo today, after Murray's Barcelona 2017 debut was delayed yet further by rain, though he did test the Scot at times.

The world number one looked on better form than last week's return to competition in Monte Carlo, but failed to serve out the first set at 5-3. His wait to take the opener did not last long, however, as he broke again immediately.

Murray's first serve percentage dipped below 50% in the second set, yet he still managed to fend off all four of the break points that Lopez conjured against him.

It then needed only one break for Murray to wrap up the second set and the match.

The Scot will be pleased to get as many matches under his belt this week as possible, given that trickier events and a huge heap of points to defend from last year are coming into view.

In light of that, Murray will hope for a better result against Albert Ramos-Vinolas on Friday than he managed last week in Monaco.
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