A semi-final spot in Shanghai should seal Murray's place in the Tour finals
Andy Murray eased into round three of the Shanghai Masters with a 6-2 6-2 victory over Chinese wildcard Bai Yan.
Yan, ranked 465, stunned world number 30 Radek Stepanek in round one but Murray, who was given a first-round bye, proved far too strong.
Next up for the British world number four is France's Jeremy Chardy after he beat Alexandr Dolgopolov of the Ukraine 6-1 5-7 6-2.
The pair will meet on Centre Court at 0700BST Thursday.
After his victory, 23-year-old Murray said: "I thought it was good. I hit the ball cleanly, he played well with some good points and he was quick, but it was definitely a good first match - I hit a lot of balls and didn't make too many mistakes.
"I've been sick a couple of times since the US Open so I need to get more match fit and to spend more time on the court - you lose strength if you're ill and not training. I'll hopefully spend more time on the court - today was a good start."
Yan, who returned in July after 18 months out through injury and a stomach problem, looked out of his depth in the early stages and a series of sloppy shots into the net allowed the Scot to race into a 4-0 lead.
The Chinese showed signs of recovery by holding his next two service games, and even found himself with a break point in game eight as Murray's concentration wavered.
However, the Scot wiped that out with an overhead smash before quickly wrapping up the game and the opening set with it.
Murray broke again at the start of the second, and a further break gave him a 3-0 lead.
Yan, fresh from two Futures tournament triumphs but playing only his second ever match against an opponent ranked in the top 100, refused to be beaten and clawed a break back in game four with a winner down the line.
Yet Murray regained his advantage in the next game, with his opponent putting a forehand wide, before holding to take a 5-1 lead.
He wasted a match point in game seven by hitting a forehand into the net, but eventually ended his opponent's challenge after one hour and 21 minutes on court with a neat drop shot.
"I'll try and play similar (against Chardy) to today," Murray added. "I'll try and dictate the points when I get into the rallies.
"He likes to use his forehand a lot so I'll try and keep it away from the middle of the court and see what happens."