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Murray confident after Nadal win

Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal
Murray beat Nadal 6-4 5-7 6-3 in the Abu Dhabi final

Andy Murray heads into the 2009 season brimming with confidence after wins over Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.

The British number one beat the world's top two players on successive days at an exhibition event in Abu Dhabi, and now heads to Doha for the Qatar Open.

And with the Australian Open just two weeks away, Murray believes he can beat world number one Nadal when it counts.

"When we play in the Australian Open, I know I'll be able to beat him in a tight match," said the Scot.

"It was an awesome way to start the year. It was a long match physically, it didn't feel like an exhibition. Some of the rallies were incredible and I feel really good about the way I played.

Today was a very good test for the knee and I'm feeling very well

Rafael Nadal
"I surprised myself. Every match with Nadal is a tough one. Every time I play the top players, I know I have to work extra hard and play my best tennis if I want to beat them."

And Nadal admitted: "He was very good towards the end of last year, and he is really playing well right now. I think he has got a great chance in Australia.

"I made some mistakes today but I think that's to be expected after two months out. I think I'm playing well, I did a lot of running and I feel great."

Nadal was happy to come through such a tough match having missed the end of last season with a knee injury.

"Today was a very good test for the knee," said the Spaniard. "It was two hour 45 minutes of high-quality (tennis), and I'm feeling very well."

The Qatar Open starts on Monday, with Murray opening later in the week against Spain's Albert Montanes, Nadal taking on Frenchman Fabrice Santoro, and Federer drawn with Italy's Potito Starace.

World number three and Australian Open champion, Novak Djokovic, begins his season against Ernests Gulbis at the Brisbane International, along with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

Brisbane will also host some of the leading women, including Djokovic's fellow Serb, Ana Ivanovic, and Daniela Hantuchova, while British number one Anne Keothavong is in action in Auckland.

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see also
Murray v Nadal as it happened
03 Jan 09 |  Tennis
Tennis stars kick off 2009
04 Jan 09 |  Tennis
Murray v Federer as it happened
02 Jan 09 |  Tennis
Murray signs with Beckham agent
30 Dec 08 |  Tennis
Murray's magical year
16 Nov 08 |  Tennis

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