Andy Murray beats Jeremy Chardy at Cincinnati Masters
Murray was often furious with himself during the match
Andy Murray overcame a second-set wobble to eventually see off Jeremy Chardy 6-3 6-7 (3-7) 6-2 in the second round of the Cincinnati Masters.
Murray, who won the Toronto Masters last week, looked in control as he broke once to take the first set.
A scrappy second set had six breaks of serve, with Murray failing to convert a match point on his serve in the 10th game before losing the tie-break.
But the Scot regained his composure and broke Chardy twice in the deciding set.
There were also wins for Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in their opening matches.
Murray, who had a bye in the first round as one of the top eight seeds, will next face Ernests Gulbis at 1700 BST on Thursday after the Latvian beat 13th seed Jurgen Melzer of Austria 6-7 (6-8) 6-3 7-6 (7-5).
The 23-year-old Briton was not fully satisfied with his efforts on the Centre Court at the Cincinnati Tennis Club.
"In the end it was frustrating," said Murray. "In the first set, I wasn't making many mistakes and he was making errors.
"In the second set, I didn't serve very well but my errors were more as a result of hitting the ball too short from the back of the court. But I stepped it up again in the third set."
Murray looked set for a comfortable win as he cruised through the first set after breaking the world number 58 in the sixth game.
The second set was anything but straightforward, with six consecutive breaks of serve, but Murray had the chance to close out the match only to pay for an increasingly passive approach as he was broken again at 5-4.
Chardy went on to win the tie-break but any thoughts of a shock result were swiftly cast aside by Murray, who refocused and began to regain the initiative with some more assertive play.
He broke Chardy in the fourth game and avoided having to serve for the match again by getting another break in the eighth, and what proved to be final, game of the match. Murray has a 4-0 record against Gulbis but believes he will face a stiffer test against the powerful Latvian on Thursday.
"He's a good player and has got a big game, similar to Chardy," he added. "I'll go and practice now. This court is really, really fast which is maybe why my timing's off."
Earlier, number one seed Nadal made light work of Taylor Dent of the United States as he eased to a 6-2 7-5 win, but the Spaniard was also concerned by the speed of the court compared to Toronto last week.
"It is something that in the future the tournaments can work to make the courts more similar," said Nadal.
"For us it's difficult to adapt, especially if you only have one or two days. When you get to semi-finals or final it's not easy to adapt, especially in the beginning of the tournament.
"So it's a big change. This first match always is very dangerous,"
Nadal next faces Frenchman Julien Benneteau, who beat Swiss player Stanislas Wawrinka 6-4 6-2.
Federer advanced when Uzbek qualifier Denis Istomin suffered a right foot injury and retired after only 28 minutes of the night match with the 16-time Grand Slam champion leading 5-2.
"If there is a right timing for this, it's now, I guess," said the Swiss. "It gives me an extra day to get into it. From that standpoint, it's good."
Meanwhile, third seed Novak Djokovic also enjoyed a relatively comfortable 6-3 7-5 win over fellow Serbian Viktor Troicki.
Djokovic was unhappy with the way he closed out the match.
"It was a very ugly set with a lot of unforced errors on both sides, a lot of double faults," he said.
"I was struggling to hit the ball really well. In the important moments when I needed to break, I did. It's good to go through in straight sets."
Djokovic, runner-up in Cincinnati in the past two years, will next face Argentina's David Nalbandian, a winner two weeks ago in Washington.
Nalbandian trailed John Isner 5-4 before the American retired from their match with an ankle injury, although he expects to be fit for the US Open, which starts on 30 August.
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