Andy Murray sees off Ivan Navarro in Aegon Championship
Aegon Championships Venue: Queen's Club Date: 7-13 June Coverage: Live video on BBC Two, Red Button and BBC Sport website (UK only); also live on Eurosport. Updates on Radio 5 live and live commentary from the quarter-finals onwards; text commentary online for all Andy Murray matches
Details of BBC coverage
Highlights - Murray battles through at Queen's (UK users only)
By Pranav Soneji
Andy Murray opened up the defence of his Aegon Championship title with a hard-fought 7-6 (10-8) 6-3 second-round win over Ivan Navarro at Queen's Club.
The world number four was pushed all the way by the Spaniard's pugnacious serve-and-volley display, eventually winning the first set tie-break.
And the Scot made the vital break in the first game of the second and the ninth to wrap up the match.
Murray will play Mardy Fish or Santiago Giraldo of Colombia in the third round.
Despite wrapping up a straights set victory, the British number one was given a thorough workout by the world number 108, who produced a number of scintillating points befitting some of the best grass-court tacticians in tennis.
"It isn't what I expected from a Spaniard, having a player come forward to the net," Murray told BBC Sport.
"I haven't played a serve-volleyer this year so it was tricky but I started returning it well and we had some good rallies and I made some good lobs and passing shots.
"I thought I moved pretty well and I hit the ball well."
Displaying considerable prowess at the net, along with an effervescent serve, Navarro kept Murray in check during a competitive and thoroughly compelling first set.
The 28-year-old took every opportunity possible to charge to the net, although Murray's passing skills were up to the task, displaying his abilities on both backhand and forehand sides.
Murray, his right knee strapped with a hi-tech support, produced some wonderful shots - a top-spin lob on the run in the eighth game a particular highlight - but could not break Navarro's serve.
With Navarro showing no signs of weakness, both men went into a first-set tie-breaker.
A winning forehand and an ace took Murray 4-1 up, but Navarro, displaying plenty of courage, fought back to level the score as both men probed for an opening to exploit.
Navarro earned a set point courtesy of a superb low volley at the net at 5-4, threatening to blemish Murray's excellent record of not dropping a set at Queen's since 2008, but the British number one levelled with a whippy cross-court forehand.
Both men exchanged a series of set-point opportunities back and forth before Murray finally converted at 10-8 with a cross-court double-handed backhand on Navarro's serve.
Murray feeling confident again
Murray immediately seized the initiative in the first game of the second set, breaking Navarro's serve for the first time when the Spaniard overhit a volley at the net.
With confidence surging, Murray closed out his first service game for a 2-0 lead.
However, Navarro once again displayed ample resolve, holding off a break point in the fifth game at 3-2.
But Murray eventually wrapped up the win in the ninth game when he was presented with two match points, converting at the second attempt with a superb forehand service return.
And he returned to court soon after alongside brother Jamie to secure a place in the men's double quarter-finals following a straight-sets 6-2 6-4 victory over Americans Scott Lipsky and Sam Querrey.
Earlier, sixth seed Gael Monfils was sent tumbling out of the tournament following a 6-3 6-7 (4-7) 6-2 defeat by Germany's Rainer Schuttler.
Frenchman Monfils said he struggled to maintain his tempo after twisting his knee in the first service game.
"I called the trainer because the tape (on the knee) was a bit loose and also I wanted him to stretch my knee because it was sore," said the former French Open semi-finalist.
"The court was bit of problem during the whole match. For me it was really hard to feel comfortable and feel my movement on the grass."
There were no such problems for American fourth seed and four-time winner at Queen's Andy Roddick, who demolished Russia's Igor Kunitsyn 6-2 6-1.
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