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Page last updated at 16:27 GMT, Sunday, 8 November 2009

Murray takes Valencia Open title

Andy Murray
Murray saw off home favourite Verdasco on his way to the final

Andy Murray secured his sixth title of 2009 with a clinical victory over Mikhail Youzhny in the Valencia Open.

The top seed showed few signs of fatigue despite playing in his first event since recovering from a wrist injury as he beat Youzhny 6-3 6-2.

The Scot took the first set comfortably after breaking Youzhny's serve early on and the Russian never recovered.

Murray, 22, increased the pressure in the second, dropping just two games to secure his 14th career title in all.

"It was a very, very good week," said Murray. "It is very rare for someone to win a tournament after a long break. I am happy I have come back from the injury well and played better with every match.

"I didn't have high expectations this week but with every round and match you get more confident. I felt good with the way I was hitting the ball."

The Valencia Open was world number four Murray's first event following a six-week lay-off.


On his way to the final, he saw off home favourite Fernando Verdasco in the semi-finals and survived a tricky three-set second-round match with Leonardo Mayer.

It was perfect preparation for this week's Masters 1000 event in Paris, the final tournament before the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals in London, starting on 22 November.

Fourth-seeded Murray will face James Blake in his first match in Paris after the American beat French veteran Fabrice Santoro 6-4 6-3 in round one.

Murray, whose last title came at the Masters in Canada in August, had met Youzhny once before, beating him in three sets in St Petersburg in 2007.

Youzhny, 27, has enjoyed good form this year, reaching the Japan Open final in October and winning his fifth ATP World Tour title at home in Moscow.

In Valencia, he kept pace with Murray until the fourth game when the Scot cemented his break with a stunning cross-court forehand.

He broke again for a 5-1 lead courtesy of another error from Youzhny but the Russian put up more of a fight in the next game, retrieving one of the breaks when his opponent miss hit a forehand after a long baseline rally.

Murray made no mistake second time round, clinching the first set with an ace, and Youzhny was immediately under pressure at the start of the second.

Playing a more offensive game than against Verdasco, Murray frequently had Youzhny scrambling all over the court.

The Russian was unable to generate any dominance on his serve and quickly found himself two breaks behind at 3-0.

Youzhny managed to get his name on the scoreboard in his next service game but Murray had victory in his sights and an ace sealed a dominant display from the British number one.

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see also
Murray v Youzhny - as it happened
08 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Murray reaches final in Valencia
07 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Murray into Valencia semi-finals
06 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Murray survives tricky Mayer test
05 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Murray wins on comeback in Spain
03 Nov 09 |  Tennis
Men's rankings
08 Oct 12 |  Men's Rankings
Profile: Andy Murray
02 Jul 10 |  UK

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