Article

Murray cruises into Melbourne final four

23 January 2013 08:57

Great Britain's third seed Andy Murray has cruised into the Australian Open semi-finals without dropping a set.

Murray was expected to handle the challenge of French surprise packet Jeremy Chardy with ease, and he did just that to wrap up a 6-4 6-1 6-2 victory in one hour and 51 minutes on Rod Laver Arena.

The Scotsman will now meet either Roger Federer or Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the semi-finals on Friday night.

Chardy had earned a maiden spot in the final eight of a major with a hat-trick of surprise victories over seeds Marcel Granollers, Juan Martin del Potro and Andreas Seppi, but he could not make it four on the trot.

The moment/s of the match came in the sixth game of the second set, when Chardy had multiple chances to gain a break back of Murray's serve which would have seen the world number 36 serving at 2-4.

Chardy was on top on both of his break-point chances, but some fine Murray defence got him out of a 15-40 hole to hold serve for 5-1 with a brilliant passing shot and a Chardy volley error helping his cause.

Murray would have been satisfied with his first service percentage of 68, however he was dominated on his second ball, winning just seven of 24 points - no doubt something revered coach Ivan Lendl will be keen to atone before Friday.

His second-serve woes came in light of a stunning return behind his first ball, winning 41 of 51 points when Murray landed his serve at the first time of asking.

Chardy's weapon is his forehand, but he had a differential of minus seven of winners to unforced errors off his right wing, which ultimately cost him any chance of being competitive against the US Open champion.

It almost goes without saying that Murray would like his next opponent to also hail from France, having won his past six against Tsonga, although he is one of few players to hold a positive head-to-head record over Federer (10-9).

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