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Murray v Hanescu as it happened

Monte Carlo Masters

Second-round result:

A MURRAY (GB) bt V Hanescu (Rom)

6-3 6-2

LATEST ACTION (all times GMT)
606: DEBATE

To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111 with the word TENNIS before your message. (Not all contributions can be used)

By Piers Newbery

SECOND SET:

1420: "Not the strongest of opponents but still a good show from murray. SF this week and maybe the same at the french. Still don't see anything that'll worry Rafa though."
Andrew from Newcastle via text on 81111

It's good news for a Briton

Murray 6-2 Hanescu
Murray takes charge with some big serving to get to 30-0 before one last stand from Hanescu at the net. It's 40-15 soon enough, and Murray... smacks a high forehand into the net. He went for the glory there. The Briton then hooks a forehand long and it's deuce - could this be the start of a Hanescu comeback? Murray tanks another forehand as Hanescu swings away without a care in the world. Break point.. but Murray holds with a solid forehand.

Another one gives him match point number three... and Hanescu goes wide with a backhand. The Romanian gets the mark checked but to no avai... look out, it was in! It's back to deuce and a focused Murray plays the best drop shot of the day - and there have been a few. Balle de match number four.... and Hanescu nets a forehand. Good stuff from Murray, who has a little chunter to the umpire about the backhand call on match point.

Murray 5-2 Hanescu
All looks well for Hanescu at 30-0 but Murray comes up with a couple of fizzing cross-court forehands and a delicate cross-court backhand to earn break point. Hanescu saves it but Murray then chases down a drop shot and produces a fantastic lob over the tall Romanian. Hanescu sends a backhand wide on the second break point and it's game, and surely match, over.

1408: "Not one set all season (see 1345)? I'll offer you 100-1, Turkeem."
Mike, London, address and bank details on request, via text on 81111

Murray 4-2 Hanescu
The match comes to a life at 15-15 when Murray hammers away at his opponent's backhand before pulling a forehand down the line and hurrying to the net to put away an easy volley. Hanescu responds with a great rally of his own before sending a forehand wide for 40-30, but Murray shanks a forehand and it's deuce.

Hanescu makes an error and Murray seals the game when the Romanian nets a forehand, prompting a "C'mon!" from the Scot.

Murray 3-2 Hanescu
Hanescu enjoys a rare straightforward hold and the match has entered something of a lull as Murray appears to be strolling towards victory and a match against Marin Cilic.

Text in your views on 81111

1356: "Re: 1335. That's a tenner you've lost after fed cruises to the French open title beating rafa in straight sets!"
Andy from Southampton via text on 81111

1355: "Dav, murray is virtually guaranteed to be no. 3 by the french open. Slighty more bold, is expect him to overtake fed by the end of wimbledon, which is a massive turnaround in 12 months!"
Dan, london, via text

1354: "Andy will suprise everyone and his first major will come on clay. You heard it here first."
Aleksandr from Russia via text

Murray 3-1 Hanescu
Murray slides into a backhand a la Lendl in the 1980s and... dumps it into the net. It's 30-40 and Hanescu has a chance to level but he sends a backhand just over the baseline. A sloppy forehand sees the game slip away and Hanescu should be well and truly done now.

I don't know about you but I think Murray could surprise a few people on clay...

It's good news for a Briton

Murray 2-1 Hanescu
Feliciano Lopez and Fernando Verdasco are among those in the crowd on Court Central and there might be a few jitters going around the clay-court community right now. Not that those two are particular clay experts. Anyway, Murray plays a fantastic backhand on the run that Hanescu cannot deal with and it's 0-40. The Romanian saves two break points but then double faults and it's looking good for Murray, just got to keep the concentration levels up.

1345: "I have a tenner on nadal not to lose a single set on clay this season."
Tarkeem from mumbai via text on 81111

Murray 1-1 Hanescu
Murray is moving really well now and looks to be enjoying himself. He gets a bit lucky when one big forehand appears to be going wide but flicks the net and leaps inside the tramline. He holds to love.

Text in your views on 81111

1342: "No way is murray going to stay number 3 dav from london (see 1326) wherever that is. Murray is going straight to number 1. He'll coast this game."
From Papa bear in newcastle via text on 81111

Murray 0-1 Hanescu
Hanescu holds serve for only the second time in the match to effectively keep his hopes alive. It could not be calmer or more laid-back in Monte Carlo at the moment and Murray will be hoping it stays that way.


FIRST SET:

BBC Radio 5 Live

1336: "A very useful set for Murray, a real workout. Hanescu likes the drop shot and Murray had to cover a lot of ground and hit a lot of balls. Once he held serve he got into a nice groove."
Jonathan Overend on BBC Radio 5 Live

It's good news for a Briton

Murray 6-3 Hanescu
Nicely done. Murray gets to 40-15 and set point by working an opening and firing a forehand into the gap, and he takes it by scrambling to reach a drop shot and prodding a forehand down the line.

Murray 5-3 Hanescu
Hanescu hits a very welcome first ace of the day to move to 40-15 but he is pegged back to deuce and only comes through thanks to a wayward Murray drop shot.

Text in your views on 81111

1326: "Not too many dirtballers in the Murray section and fully expect him to make the SF! Don't think he is beating nadal on the red stuff just yet though! Murray will be world number 3 come the French Open, mark my words, Murray to win 3 and 2 today."
Dav from ravenscourt park, London, via text on 81111

Murray 5-2 Hanescu
Hanescu gets a lift with a backhand-lob-volley winner for 15-30 but Murray responds with one of his trademark cross-court backhands. A long and - for the first time today - tense rally ensues and Hanescu has a chance but mishits a forehand on his way into the net, and a poor return gives Murray the game.

It's good news for a Briton

Murray 4-2 Hanescu
The camera pans across the back of the stand and out onto the perfect calm of the Mediterranean. Nice. Hanescu plays the best shot so far when he arrows a forehand down the line, and he follows up by winning a clever exchange at the net. However, Murray is stepping it up from the baseline now and Hanescu is struggling to deal with it, overhitting a forehand to fall 30-40 down.

It's break point and Murray has a good chance with a running forehand pass but nets it, and another goes begging moments later in similar fashion. The Briton then paddles a backhand down the line on the stretch for break point number three... Hanescu sends a backhand long and, after the umpire checks the mark, it's game Murray.

Murray 3-2 Hanescu
Finally, the first hold of the day and it's a love game for Murray, who wraps it up with a big serve. Nothing too spectacular from the Scot so far but he's still edged ahead and Hanescu may live to regret twice losing a break advantage.

Murray 2-2 Hanescu
Murray takes the initiative and wins three straight points by moving to the net, before Hanescu goes long to drop serve. Again.

Murray 1-2 Hanescu
It's all a bit careful from Murray so far and he's nowhere near the baseline with his groundstrokes, hitting most of them to around the service line. Hanescu plays a fine rally at 30-30, playing another deft drop volley from behind the baseline to earn a break point. This time, Murray completely wrong-foots his man with an angled drop shot of his own for deuce, but Hanescu makes it 2-1 on drop shots with yet another.

Break point number two... and Murray fires down an ace. The Briton then nets a forehand and this game is becoming a bit tortuous. Especially so when he double faults to lose the game.

Murray 1-1 Hanescu
This time it's Hanescu's turn to falter after winning the first point. Three errors hand Murray a couple of break-back points and the Romanian hammers a forehand into the net to give up his advantage.

Murray 0-1 Hanescu
Murray to serve... and there's still a bit to work on for the Briton. Murray opens up with an ace but then makes three unforced errors before Hanescu takes the game with a drop shot.

Highlights: Murray beaten by Almagro

1250: Another interesting result - clay-courter Nicolas Almagro, conqueror of Murray at last year's French Open, has gone down in a third set tie-break to Albert Montanes.

1246: Well, the knock-up is well under way and no sign yet of Wilanderesque moonballs or Lendl-like slides along the baseline from Murray. I would at least expect him to be tapping the clay from the soles of his trainers at every opportunity, that's clay-court basics.

1242: The players walk out into the sunshine of Court Central and there's a decent hand for Murray. He's been working with former French Open finalist Alex Corretja for the second year in a row and is determined to at least reach the latter stages of a big clay-court event for the first time over the next few weeks.

1240: "My goodness, what on earth is happening this morning?! I left for lunch at Monfils being kicked out, come back and Simon is thrashed?"
From pottiella on 606

1236: The week has barely begun and we've already had two shocks today - ninth seed Gael Monfils lost 6-3 6-1 to Janko Tipsarevic before fellow Frenchman and sixth seed Gilles Simon went down 7-5 6-1 to Andreas Beck. Sacre bleu.

The sun is out

1230: Good afternoon, and welcome to the French Riviera for the start of the clay-court season proper. It's another humdrum day in the principality of Monaco as the locals suffer the ceaseless sunshine and tiresome opulence to get a look at our very own Andy Murray.

Britain's number one takes on world number 35 Hanescu for the first time today, with the Scot looking to start building his otherwise impressive CV on the red dirt. The rankings and the formbook suggest this should be straightforward for the world number four, but Hanescu made it to the last eight on Casablanca's clay last week so has a bit of form himself.



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see also
Monte Carlo photos
12 Apr 09 |  Tennis


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