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Page last updated at 14:12 GMT, Wednesday, 14 May 2008 15:12 UK

Murray v Simon as it happened

Hamburg Masters

Second round result:


6-3 6-3



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By Phil Harlow

Second set:

1653: Right then, I'm off to apply myself elsewhere. It's been a pleasure.

1650: "You can't argue with that performance really."
Bez1989 on 606

1648: "It was a very good win. He's beaten a lot of top guys on clay and is a very tough clay-court player. I was happy to finish it off so professionally."
Andy Murray's post-match reaction

Murray 6-3 6-3 Simon
It seems to be contagious. Murray goes to pieces at just the wrong time, going 40-0 down on his own serve as he looks to clinch the win.

He saves all three as Simon loses the plot with a break there for the taking. At deuce, Murray wins a fourth point in a row, with Simon netting a backhand, to give himself match point.

A lengthy rally ends with Simon firing into the net again, and Murray clinches the win.

Murray 6-3 5-3 Simon
A shocker of a game from Simon as mistake after mistake puts Murray 40-0 up on the Frenchman's serve. Murray needs no second invitation, and seals the game with a delightful drop shot.

Murray to serve for the match now. Simon, meanwhile, is absolutely furious with himself.

Murray 6-3 4-3 Simon
Murray seems to have his mind on the job again as he holds to love. That's what he needs to do from here on in.

1634: "The universe started with the Big Bang, Phil, or maybe with God, depending what you read. Isn't student life supposed to be about sleeping and beer...?"
Katie via text (see 1548 entry)

Thanks for clearing that up, Katie. There you are people - talk about value for money. You tune in for the latest updates on Andy Murray's second-round match at the Hamburg Masters, and you get some origin of the universe chat thrown in for free.

Murray 6-3 3-3 Simon
A tremendous volley from Simon puts him up early in the game, and a feeble shot into the net from Murray sees the Scot punch his racquet in frustration.

Simon goes on to hold, and Murray needs to find a bit of his first-set form to get things going again.

Murray 6-3 3-2 Simon
Murray powers into a 40-0 lead, but Simon puts together an excellent couple of points - moving his opponent around the court with aplomb - to fight back to deuce.

But Murray is not in the mood to hand a break over without a fight, and he wins the next two points in authoritative fashion to edge ahead in the set.

Murray 6-3 2-2 Simon
Murray has the chance to break, but Simon just about holds on. Murray still looks the man most likely though.

1616: "The Mumbles Mile (see 1514 entry) has gone downhill badly, Phil! The list of worthwhile pubs is shorter that Justine Henin's career."
Paul, Swansea via text

That is terribly sad news, Paul. I'm gutted to hear that. I spent many a happy evening there back in my student days. I like the way you made your text both topical (Henin has just announced her retirement for those who haven't heard) and tennis-related though - top marks.
Henin announces shock retirement

Murray 6-3 2-1 Simon
Another comfortable hold for Murray. Simon just does not seem able to cause his opponent many problems at the moment.

Murray 6-3 1-1 Simon
Simon manages to hold serve, but Murray keeps him under pressure throughout. A long rally, with Simon 40-30 up, eventually goes in the Frenchman's favour as he shows he has not given this one up.

Murray 6-3 1-0 Simon
Murray continues where he left off last game with a very comfortable hold indeed. Simon seems to be somewhat distracted. Maybe he's still got an unwanted John Denver song in his head...

1606: "Great first set! Murray playing out of his skin! But it is only Simon, and he played far too aggressively, and got caught out with the break back by Simon..

"He should have rounded it off a lot quicker but nonetheless, fantastic start!"
Elchupe on 606

First set:

Murray 6-3 Simon
Great movement from Murray sees him smash a backhand winner to give himself two break and set points. Simon serves the first with a lovely forehand but a backhand on the line seals the set.

Murray 5-3 Simon
Simon seems to be getting agitated by the non-stop music and chit-chat from the MC coming from the next-door court and I have to say that I have some sympathy.

Murray keeps his focus though, and stops the rot by winning the game reasonably comfortably to move within sight of the first set.

Murray 4-3 Simon
There's some kind of musical hell being inflicted on the paying customers on the next court with a karaoke version of John Denver's "Take Me Home, Country Roads" belting out the speakers. And you thought the life of a tennis player was glamorous...

On court, Murray has slightly gone off the boil. He goes 30-0 up on Simon's serve, but lets the Frenchman back into the game. It goes to deuce and Simon eventually seals it with a fine volley at the net.

1552: "Murray v Simon eh? Anyone know if there's a name for when someone has a surname that can also be a first name? Kevin v Malcolm up next..."
butidontlikecarrots on 606

Murray 4-2 Simon
A great backhand down the line by Simon - the best shot he's played so far - gives him break point on Murray's serve. And a mistake by Murray on the next point allows the Frenchman to at least get one break back.

1548: "Currently writing my last ever uni essay about the origins of the universe, BBC Sport updates on the football and tennis are keeping me going!"
Katie via text

Just remind me again, Katie... How did the universe start? It's on the tip of my tongue...

Murray 4-1 Simon
Maybe Murray is actually inspired by insipid Europop... He storms into a 40-0 lead on Simon's serve, loses the next point but then seals his second break of serve. The 20-year-old is well in charge of this one now.

Murray 3-1 Simon
Simon goes after Murray's second serve with a little more aggression, but the Scot holds with a fair amount of ease as his forehand keeps the pressure up.

Neither Murray nor Simon's concentration can be massively helped by the sound of Bob Sinclair's dance anthem "Love Generation" booming from the main court after the conclusion of Roger Federer's match. Intensely annoying in my opinion.

Murray 2-1 Simon
That's a bit more like it from Simon as he holds to love. A cracking drive volley puts Simon 40-0 up after Murray can only float the ball back over the net at full stretch, and a net cord in his favour seals the game.

Murray 2-0 Simon
Wallop. Murray plays some powerful stuff on the forehand to hold serve with ease, dropping just the one point. Simon needs to raise his game quickly before this first set disappears over the horizon.

Murray 1-0 Simon
Perfect start for Murray as he breaks serve at the first time of asking. Some sloppy errors in Simon's play already bode well for Murray, who seals his second break point with a gorgeous lob over the head of his static opponent.

1530: "I'm pretty sure the wrist injury will be on his mind. But the sign of a true winner is to get these things off your mind as you try to concentrate on the tennis..."
Abroard_magpie on 606Join the debate on 606

1529: Gilles Simon to serve, here we go. Hold onto your hats....

1528: As we said earlier, Andy Murray lost his only previous meeting with Gilles Simon - at the Rome Masters last year - but he doesn't expect it to be a problem this time around.

"I'm looking forward to it," he said after his first-round win.

"It was a tough match in Rome, we had a couple of rain delays and there wasn't much rhythm.

"The weather's been beautiful here so hopefully that'll stay the same. I'm feeling confident I can win this one."

1526: Worth pointing out that this is the very same tournament and court where Andy Murray first damaged his wrist last year. Will that play on his mind on his return?

1523: The players are out on court going through their regular pre-match warm-up routines. It's fair to say that the stands are not exactly bursting at the seams, but there are a couple of Scotland flags on show to boost Andy Murray's spirits.

1519: "I think Murray will beat Simon in straight sets. He'll definitely be looking to get some consistency in his game, good consistency that is, he's been consistently average lately."
rossag on 606Join the debate on 606

1514: It could be a decent couple of days for Andy Murray, with his 21st birthday there to be celebrated tomorrow.

As a full-time professional athlete, hopefully Murray will not be emulating my 21st celebrations by attempting the famous Mumbles Mile pub crawl. It could make his potential third-round meeting with Rafael Nadal a less than pleasant experience.

1512: Afternoon all, let's get ready for the latest instalment in the Andy Murray adventure as our hero tries to make it into the third round in Hamburg.

Standing in his way is Frenchman Gilles Simon. Not a massive name in the tennis world, but he is not to be sneezed at with a current world ranking of 35.

The 23-year-old also beat Murray on clay at the Rome Masters last year in their only previous meeting, so the Scot should be fully prepared for a testing match.

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